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If David Newhan had to nail down two teams that were his likely employer for 2007, it would be the Cubs and Mets.

Not a bad pair to choose from.

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"I'd say those two are the best bets," he told me earlier today in a phone conversation.

Both teams have made the strongest offers to Newhan, who wasn't tendered a contract by the Orioles. And he sees both of them as good fits, especially because he could return to the National League.

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"Infield, outfield...I could do a lot with a National League team," he said. "And in both situations, I have a good chance to make the clubs."

Newhan might have to accept a minor league contract, but he'd do so expecting to have a legitimate chance to be in the majors on Opening Day.

Living on the West Coast, it would be nice if Newhan could somehow infiltrate the Dodgers or Padres roster, but he might have to settle for the East or Midwest. Whatever. As long as he's playing.

"I think I could help a lot of teams," he said.

Newhan expected to be helping the Orioles, who expressed interest after the season in resigning him. He bought a condo in Baltimore.

"It's weird," he said. "It was nice having those years in Baltimore. It was a beautiful thing. You think you have a home. They tell you one thing in the off-season and then go in another direction. But it's a business and you move on.

"I love Baltimore. I felt very comfortable there. I expected to be there for a long time, but there are no hard feelings. I'd like to get back there sometime."

Newhan is used to battling for a job, and to people counting him out. I wouldn't advise it. He's pretty scrappy.

"There aren't many people who break a leg and come back in the same season," he said. "Or who are written off and then become the starting left fielder. Or who break a leg and then become the starting center fielder.

"In any situation, I always bet on me."

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