AP source: MLB players, owners reach verbal deal

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NEW YORK (AP) -- A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press that baseball players and owners have reached a tentative verbal agreement on a five-year labor contract and hope to have a signed deal by next week.

The person, speaking on condition of anonymity because the agreement still was being drafted, says negotiators reached an understanding when they met late Thursday at the InterContinental O'Hare in Rosemont, Ill.

The person says Friday they hope to sign a memorandum of understanding in time to announce the agreement Monday or Tuesday. The last item to fall in place was the luxury tax on high payroll teams.

The agreement would replace the one expiring Dec. 11 and would give baseball 21 years of labor peace since the 1994-95 strike.