ORLANDO, Florida (AP) — Yankees managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner on Tuesday said initial contract talks between the New York club and shortstop Derek Jeter are progressing well.

Jeter, his agent Casey Close and Yankees officials including Steinbrenner got together last week in Tampa, Florida. There have been additional discussions over the past week.

Jeter is a free agent for the first time after completing a 10-year contract this season. The Yankees have also held talks with the agents for pitcher Mariano Rivera, who is also a free agent.

“We do this every year,” Steinbrenner said. “It’s nothing out of the ordinary. Circumstances are a bit out of the ordinary. We know what we’re dealing with here. We’re dealing with two great Yankees. Nevertheless, the process is the same. We’ll just continue talking to them.”

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Also, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman is continuing the search for a pitching coach to replace Dave Eiland, who was fired. Candidates include bullpen coach Mike Harkey, Oakland Athletics roving pitching instructor Gil Patterson and Yankees minor league coach Scott Aldred.

Cashman didn’t rule out making a small deal this week, and hasn’t heard yet from left-hander Andy Pettitte, who hasn’t decided whether to play next season or retire.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

pixy Yankees Steinbrenner: Talks With Jeter Going Well

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