Ortiz set to accept arbitration from Red Sox


Ortiz set to accept arbitration from Red Sox

DALLAS -- Even before Wednesday's midnight deadline, David Ortiz has made a decision to accept salary arbitration from the Red Sox, effectively reuniting the slugger with the team for his 10th season with the club.

By accepting the team's offer, which it made last month, binds Ortiz to the Sox and prohibits him from negotiating with any other clubs.

Ortiz and the Red Sox can still negotiate a longer-term deal even after the arbitration acceptance is official, but there's little hope for a resolution beyond 2012.

The club recently made a two-year, 18 million offer to Ortiz, a source confirmed, but that was far from what Ortiz was seeking. Ortiz had hoped that a two-year deal would be worth 25 million, giving him the same payday (12.5 million per season) that he had in 2011.

ESPNBoston was the first to report the Sox' contract offer.

Through the arbitration process, Ortiz is likely to earn somewhere between 13-14 million for 2012, a modest raise over last season. The Red Sox haven't actually gone to arbitration since Theo Epstein took over as general manager after the 2002 season, so it seems likely that the sides will settle beforehand.

"We've had some more dialogue (with Ortiz's agent Fernando Cuza) since we got to Dallas," said GM Ben Cherington, "and he's got that decision to make (Wednesday). We remain hopeful that he's on the team in 2012. That's been our position all along. But we haven't agreed on anything yet."

Cherington, in an indirect reference to the team's two-year offer, said the Sox have "talked to him about" being part of the Sox beyond 2012.

"So, in theory, yeah, we'd like to have him on the team and we've expressed that to him," said Cherington. "If there's a way to make it work, we'd like to have him finish his career with the Red Sox. We haven't reached an agreement on a contract, but we've had good dialogue.

"I think there's a good understanding of our respective positions and a lot of mutual respect. If we don't reach anything by (Wednesday), we'll see what his decision is. If we don't and he accepts, then we'll be happy with that outcome."

Baseball sources indicate that what hamstrung Ortiz on the open market was the knowledge that a team would have to forfeit its first round pick next June in compensation. Ortiz is a Type A free agent, and because the Sox offered him arbitration, they would obtain a first-round pick and a sandwich pick had he signed elsewhere.

Jackie Bradley Jr. explains why he wouldn't skip White House visit

Jackie Bradley Jr. explains why he wouldn't skip White House visit

Jackie Bradley Jr. will likely have a spotless attendance record for White House trips.

The Boston Red Sox outfielder began discussing those championship trips to meet the president after Red Sox chairman Tom Werner referenced the New England Patriots' Super Bowl win at a team get-together on Friday morning.

“If my team is going, yes, I’m going,” Bradley Jr. told WEEI.com's Rob Bradford, adding later, “I don’t like politics, not even a little bit.”

The Patriots so far have six players who have openly stated they will not attend New England's White House trip to meet President Donald Trump. Team leaders like Dont'a Hightower and Devin McCourty are among those unwilling to attend.

For Bradley, the White House trip is not about making a political statement.

“The reason why we’re going there is because we did something together as a team. The White House is cool,” he said. “I’m with my team."

The 26-year-old outfielder has twice attended the championship trip to the nation's capital. In college, he went with the South Carolina Gamecocks after they won the College World Series. He later attended with the Red Sox in 2013. Bradley Jr. said he enjoyed attending the White House to meet Barack Obama, but added he wasn't concerned with which president was hosting the event.

He said: “How many people can say they’ve been to the White House? That alone. There is a lot history there, and I’m a big fan of architecture. I think the whole thing is unique.”

Dombrowski: There's a lot of talent on this Red Sox team

Dombrowski: There's a lot of talent on this Red Sox team

Trenni Kusnierek talks with Dave Dombrowski about the Red Sox clubhouse and their expectations for the 2017 season.