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Phillips headed to Japan

Former Demopolis Academy standout Andy Phillips inked a one-year, $400,000 contract offer with the Hiroshima Carp of Japan’s Central League this week.

“I’m really looking forward to playing for a team that has a long history in such a great country,” Phillips said on the team’s official Web site. “I’ll do every thing I can to help the team win a championship.”

Phillips, who has spent time in the big leagues with the New York Yankees, Cincinnati Reds and New York Mets, began spring training with the Pittsburgh Pirates before sustaining a back injury that left him without a roster spot on Opening Day. After beginning his season at Triple-A Indianapolis, Phillips was shipped to the Chicago White Sox in a trade. Phillips never touched the White Sox’ roster, spending 49 games with Triple-A Charlotte.

In his 2009 Minor League stops, Phillips hit a combined .300 with nine doubles, six home runs and 29 RBIs in 56 games.

In his MLB career Phillips — a Tuscaloosa resident — boasts a .250 batting average with 14 home runs and 70 RBIs in 259 games over five different seasons.

The Carp, managed by American Marty Brown, are in fourth place in the six-team Central League, nine games behind the first-place Yomiuri Giants.