The Milwaukee Brewers announced the signing of Japanese All-Star outfielder Norichika Aoki to a two year contract with an option for 2014. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The 30 year old Aoki was a three-time batting champion in Japan's Central League, a former rookie of the year and 6 time gold glove winner during his 7 year career. It took the Brewers two and a half million dollars just to negotiate a deal with Aoki's former club, the Yakult Swallows. The Brewers also announced they've avoided arbitration with two relief pitchers. Francisco Rodriguez has signed a one year deal worth a reported 8 million dollars while Kameron Loe has signed a one year, 2.1 million dollar contract. Finally, after a 16 year playing career including two stints with the Brewers, Craig Counsell formally retired as a player and immediately rejoined the Brewers front office. He was hired as a special assistant to General Manager Doug Melvin. Craig's father, John Counsel spent 9 years in the Brewers front office in the 1980's.