Sox nearly done with arbitration to-do list

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Sox nearly done with arbitration to-do list

Few franchises had as many arbitration-eligible players as the Red Sox at the start of this week. In the last two days, however, the Red Sox reduced that list from nine players to just one.

After first agreeing with catcher Jarrod Saltalamaacchia on a 4.5 million contract Thursday, the Red Sox crossed off six more names on the arbitration-eligible list Friday, first signing outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury, newly-acquired closer Joel Hanrahan and then five more relievers to one year deals.

Lefty Craig Breslow is the only unsigned arbitration-eligible player, despite a mere 50,000 separating his filing request (2.375 million) and the team's offer of 2.325 million

Ellsbury got 9 million -- a raise of almost exactly 1 million over last year, when he earned 8.05 million - while Hanrahan agreed to a 7.04 million contract, up from the 4.1 million he earned from the Pittsburgh Pirates last season.

Andrew Bailey signed for 4.1 million, up slightly from his 3.9 million from 2012.

Alfredo Aceves more than doubled his salary, going from 1.2 million to 2.65 million.

Daniel Bard, who had a lost season and spent more than two months at Triple A Pawtucket, will earn 1.8625, up slightly from his 1.6125 from last year.

Andrew Miller agreed to a 1.475 million deal, an increase over the 1.04 million he earned last year.

Franklin Morales, who made just 850,000 in 2012, agreed to a 1.4875 million contract.

Drellich: Hanley Ramirez has to improve or Red Sox need to try others

Drellich: Hanley Ramirez has to improve or Red Sox need to try others

BOSTON — It doesn’t really matter what’s holding Hanley Ramirez back: his health, his desire to play at less-than-100 percent, neither, both. The Red Sox need him to produce more at the plate, as the designated hitter, or need to play someone who can produce more.

The suggestion of putting Ramirez on the disabled list so that his shoulders (and now, his left knee, where he was hit by a pitch Sunday) may heal is reasonable. If you can’t hit well — if you can’t even be in the lineup — why are you on the roster?

Ramirez was out for a second straight game Tuesday night. 

Flat-out benching Ramirez in favor of Chris Young or Sam Travis or both for a time makes sense too. Young will DH again Tuesday and Travis will start at first against Twins left-hander Hector Santiago. 

Try one, try all. The route to better production doesn’t matter. As long as the Sox get some, be it from Ramirez or somewhere else.

After Mitch Moreland, who’s playing with a fractured big toe on his left foot, homered and had another impactful night on Monday, Sox manager John Farrell made some comments that are hard to read as anything but a message to Ramirez.

“In his most recent stretch, he’s been able to get on top of some fastballs that have been at the top of the strike zone or above for some power obviously,” Farrell said. “But I think the way he’s gone about it given the physical condition he’s in, is a strong message to the remainder of this team.”

Tuesday is June 27. From May 27 on, Ramirez is hitting .202 with a .216 on-base percentage and .369 slugging percentage. 

In the final three months of the 2016 season, Ramirez hit .300 with a .379 OBP and .608 slugging percentage. That’s from the start of July through the end of the regular season. 

The potential for such a second-half surge is hard to ignore. The Sox need to figure out if Ramirez is healthy enough to give it to them, and if not, be willing to give someone else an extended look — be it with Ramirez on the bench or the DL.

Farrell suspended one game for last week's run-in with umpire

Farrell suspended one game for last week's run-in with umpire

BOSTON -- Red Sox manager John Farrell has been suspended one game because of Saturday night's scream-fest with umpire Bill Miller, when Farrell objected to a balk call made on Fernando Abad that led to an Angels run in the seventh inning.

Farrell is to serve the suspension on Tuesday night. He has also been fined.

Farrell and the umpire couldn't have been much closer to each other's face, and some contact was made.

"There was contact made, yes. I didn't bump him though," Farrell said a day later. "The tip of my finger touched his shirt."

Miller has ejected Farrell three times, more than any other umpire.

"No, honestly I didn't even know that, someone's brought to my attention that it's been the third time," Farrell said Sunday when asked if that history played in. "I don't have a tote board of who's done what and how many times