Jerry Hairston joins Pads; will play with brother

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SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres have acquired two Hairston brothers in three days.

Jerry Hairston Jr., a utilityman who was with the New York Yankees when they won the World Series, agreed Monday to a $2,125,000, one-year deal.

The move likely was hastened after the Padres completed a trade with Oakland on Saturday to reacquire Hairston’s younger brother, Scott. They are the sons of former big leaguer Jerry Hairston.

Jerry Hairston Jr. said he had been looking at a handful of teams.

“I thought San Diego would be a great fit, then boom, Scott gets traded over there, and it’s icing on the cake,” he said in a phone interview.

Because Jerry is four years older than Scott, the two never played together in Little League or high school. They did play together for Mexico in last spring’s World Baseball Classic.

“It’s amazing,” Jerry said. “Before he got traded I asked him about San Diego, and he said it was an unbelievable place to play, with great fans and a great organization. I had no idea he would get traded back here. He was trying to sell me on San Diego, and he did a great job of it. Then it just so happens he got traded.”

The Hairstons would become the seventh set of brothers to play for the Padres, the fifth as teammates. All-Star first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and his older brother, Edgar, played for San Diego the past two seasons. Edgar Gonzalez signed with the Yomiuri Giants of Japan’s Central League this month.

General manager Jed Hoyer said the Padres had been talking with Jerry Hairston for more than a month, and acquiring Scott “may have sped things along at the very end. It’s a coincidence that we ended up with both of them, although Scott may have played a role in pushing Jerry over the edge in signing here.”

Hoyer said Jerry Hairston will give the Padres a much more versatile bench, with his ability to play third base, shortstop, second base and all three outfield positions.

“He plays all those positions well,” Hoyer said. “He brings a lot of energy and a lot of versatility. We’re excited to have him.”

Jerry Hairston split the 2009 season between Cincinnati and the Yankees, combining to hit .251 with 10 home runs and 39 RBIs.

He singled and scored the winning run in the 13th inning of Game 2 of the AL championship series against the Los Angeles Angels.

Jerry Hairston came up as a shortstop but can play just about anywhere.

“There’s always options with me,” he said. “The biggest thing I’ve learned being in the big leagues for 12 years is a lot of things happen during the course of the year. It’s a long season and I always prepare myself to play. If I’m in the lineup, I’m prepared. If I’m not, I’m prepared. That’s why I’ve had success. The good thing about it, I can start at second one night and in center another night. Wherever, the bottom line is just help your team win.”

He is a lifetime .259 hitter, with 49 homers and 291 RBIs.

Scott Hairston is expected to platoon in center and right field.