Monday, November 24, 2014

Sox-Panda Deal Confirmed Pending Physical

According to The San Francisco Chronicle's John Shea, the free-agent deal between the Red Sox and Pablo Sandoval is confirmed—pending a physical. No specific word on the exact terms of the contract agreement is—as yet—available. Shea also states that the new deal will be "announced shortly". Stay tuned for further details.

REPORT: Red Sox And Lester 'Close' to Deal

According to MLB Insider Jake Wesley, the Red Sox and free-agent lefty Jon Lester are "close" to a deal in the range of $120-$140 million. At this point, there is no specific word on the duration of the proposed contract. Boston is also reportedly in "serious" trade talks with the Philadelphia Phillies for another left-handed starter—Cole Hamels. Stay tuned!!!!

Red Sox In 'Serious' Trade Talks For Hamels

(USAToday Sports)
According to USAToday's Bob Nightengale, the Red Sox are in "serious talks" with the Philadelphia Phillies regarding a trade for ace lefty starter Cole Hamels. Clearly, after signing both Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez, Boston needs to fill the two open spots at the top of their pitching rotation. The Red Sox surplus of outfielders and bevy of young prospects could be just enough to pry Hamels away from The City Of Brotherly Love. And, a Hamles trade would not necessarily preclude Boston from still going after Jon Lester. Keep those seatbelts fastened!

Hanley To Play LF, Deal Is 4YRs And $88M

According to FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal, the Red Sox deal with Hanley Ramirez is for four years and $88 million—with a fifth year "vesting option" valued at an additional $22 million. Reports are also confirming that Ramirez will be the Red Sox left-fielder.

Would Hanley And Lester Re-Start PizzaGate?

Could the Red Sox follow-up on their dual-mega-signings of Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval by signing Jon Lester? If so, it could potentially re-ignite the famed PizzaGate incident of 2010. Back then, Lester stated the following about his former teammate Ramirez, "I'd have a better chance of being struck by lightning than me and him getting a pizza together. You can take that for what it's worth. But there was no chance on God's green earth that I was getting a pizza with him." Pretty harsh words! Can these two co-exist in the same clubhouse again? Stay tuned!

Panda And Hanley Mega Signings By Red Sox

It appears that the Red Sox will sign two top free agents—as reports point to deals with both Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval. Reportedly, the Panda deal is for five years and almost $100 million. The Ramirez deal is five years and $90 million. It's unclear where Ramirez would play—but left field is a likely landing spot. If both of these deals are consummated—and every indication is that they will be—it heightens the possibility of more deals to free up the outfield logjam. Boston could package Yoenis Cespedes and some prospects for a front line starter like Cole Hamels. Alternatively, the Red Sox could hold on to their kids and sign more free agents—like Jon Lester and/or James Shields. Stay tuned, sports fans!

Sox Will Sign Hanley Ramirez To 5-Year Deal

Multiple media reports indicate that the Red Sox will sign former farmhand Hanley Ramirez to a five year, $90 million contract. Reportedly, Ramirez is on his way to Boston this morning. Ramirez. 30, was traded to the Marlins in exchange for Josh Beckett. Presumably, Ramirez would play third base (which he has indicated would be fine with him). However, if Boston also signs Pablo Sandoval, Ramriez would likely move to left field.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Is Evil Empire Lurking In Shadows On Lester?

According to FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal, there are six teams involved in the Jon Lester sweepstakes—and he warns us not to count out The Bronx Embalmers. Rosenthal states that while The Pinstriped Posers have denied interest, "the entire sport is bracing for them to snap to attention, as they always do". Of course, no outcome could be worse than The Evil Ones snaring Lester. Stay tuned.

Is Hanley Ramirez Headed Back To Red Sox?

He's been rumored as a legitimate alternative to Pablo Sandoval. However, until recently, Hanley Ramirez re-uniting with the Red Sox has seemed like a long-shot. This morning, two separate reports—albeit from non-traditional sources—state that Raimrez is on his way to Boston. It's important to state that no independent confirmation is available on these reports, but it may be that Ben Cherington is tiring of being used as a pawn by The Panda to fetch higher bids from the likes of San Diego.

Poll Switch: Majority Now Oppose Panda Push

In a stunning reversal of opinion, a solid majority of FenwayNation readers (57%) now oppose going beyond five years and $100 million to land The Kung Fu Panda. Reportedly, Boston has offered five years and $95 million to Pablo Sandoval—but they have been outbid by the San Diego Padres. Current sentiment is against the Red Sox furthering the bidding beyond the century mark. In our first reading, almost six in ten supported the idea of pushing the limits for Sandoval—now, not so much. You can still vote in the poll HERE.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Padres Top Bid On Panda; But He's Leaning Sox

According to a report by The San Francisco Chronicle's John Shea, the San Diego Padres are the top bidders for the services of free agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval—higher than the offers made by the Giants and Red Sox. However, the word is that The Panda is leaning toward the Red Sox—who reportedly offered five years and $95 million. Expect the Sandoval camp to make a decision by Thanksgiving—or sooner. Stay tuned!

Red Sox Offer Panda 5 Yrs., $95M

Multiple reports suggest that the Red Sox offered Pablo Sandoval a five-year, $95 million contract on Friday. This exceeds the Giants offer of five years and $90 million. Only the Padres remain as an additional suitor—and it's highly unlikely they will surpass Boston's offer. Sandoval's agent did, however, meet with San Diego General Manager A.J. Preller on Friday in Miami. While there is no official confirmation as yet from Yawkey Way, it looks like PandaTime at Fenway could be at hand!

POLL: Opinion Now Split On Panda Contract

FenwayNation readers are now about evenly split on whether the Red Sox should go beyond five years and $100 million on a Panda contract. As the chart shows, 51% support going the extra mile, while almost as many (49%) take the opposite view. You can still vote in the poll HERE.

Friday, November 21, 2014

REPORT: Lester Meeting With Two More Teams

According to WEEI.com's Rob Bradford, free agent lefty Jon Lester will meet with at least two more teams next week about a new contract. So far, Lester has reportedly met with the Red Sox, Braves and Cubs. It's believed that at least one of the two additional teams is the St. Louis Cardinals—and the 'wild card' fifth team could well be The Evil Empire.

Miller Likely To Sign Four-Year Deal Somewhere

(Getty Images)
According to FOXSports.com's Jon Morosi, former Red Sox reliever Andrew Miller has fielded "multiple" three-year contract offers and thus is likely to land a four-year deal from someone. The tall, free-agent lefty could break the all-time record contract for relievers—when calculated as the average annual value (AAV) of the likely deal. It's unclear whether the Red Sox are one of the teams in on the bidding—but it seems unlikely that Ben Cherington would go for a four-year pact.

POLL: Six In Ten Want To Go Extra For Panda

The very early results to our latest FenwayNation Poll indicate that six in ten readers would go beyond five years and $100 million to land The Kung Fu Panda. As the chart shows, four in ten take the opposite view—that more than five years and $100 million is too much to pay (even for an endangered species). You can still vote in the poll HERE.

Swihart Is Baseball America's Top Defensive C

Swihart—(FenwayNation Photo)
Blake Swihart—ranked as the #1 prospect in the Red Sox organization—has been named as Baseball America's Defensive Catcher Of The Year. The authoritative website stated that Swihart is just about ready to make the jump to the major leagues. The 22-year old switch-hitting backstop hit .293 between AA and AAA in 2014—clouting 13 HRs. He may join Christian Vazquez on the 2015 big club—comprising one of the youngest Boston catching tandems ever. Congratulations, Blake!

Red Sox Promote Raquel Ferreira To VP Spot

Raquel Ferreira (via TWITTER)
Kudos to the New Ownership Group (NOG) for pro-actively moving a female executive into the top ranks of the organization. Raquel Ferreira has been named as Vice President of Baseball Administration—becoming just the third woman in MLB to reach the VP level. Ms. Ferreira has most recently been Senior Director of Minor League Operations—but has been with the Red Sox since 1999. As such, she has survived two ownership groups and even a few GMs. That alone should qualify her for higher office. Congratulations to Ms. Ferreira!

FN POLL: Panda-Monium On Yawkey Way?

Panda-Monium On Yawkey Way?

Should Sox go beyond 5 years and $100M For Panda?

  Current Results

Panda's Agent: Treated "First Class" In Boston

Panda At Logan (WHDH-TV)
Not that it necessarily means anything, but Pablo Sandoval's agent was impressed with the royal treatment given to The Panda during his Hub visit. Said Gustavo Vasquez, "The attentiveness they've had for us in Boston has been first class". That's all well and good, but the Giants still think they have the inside track on Sandoval—plus the Blue Jays and Padres are also in the mix. As the off-season drones on, it appears that the Sox might be being "played" by a number of free agents—and risk winding up with coal in their Christmas stocking (sorry, I meant their "Winter Festival Footgear").

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Red Sox Add Four To Forty-Man Roster

The Red Sox announced today that they've added four players to their 40-man roster—which is now full. The four are: Sean Coyle (2B), Eduardo Rodriguez (P), Travis Shaw (1B) and Blake Swihart (C). Today was the deadline for such assignments to protect players from the December Rule 5 Draft. If Boston makes any free-agent acquisitions, they will have to make corresponding deletions from the 40-man roster.

REPORT: Many MLB Execs See Lester To Cubs

ESPN.com's Buster Olney is reporting that multiple MLB executives are now of the view that Jon Lester will be signed by the Chicago Cubs. This is not surprising since the Red Sox floated a second low-ball offer to Lester this week—well below what most consider to be the lefty's true market value. Cubs President Theo Epstein is no doubt eager to stick it to his old nemesis Larry Lucchino by swooping in on Lester. Many, of course, have felt—for some time now—that Wrigley would be Lester's final destination.