Ortiz, Papelbon file for free agency

Ortiz, Papelbon file for free agency
October 30, 2011, 10:34 pm
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The Red Sox' active offseason continued on Sunday.

Eight Red Sox filed for free agency Sunday, according to the MLB Players Association: Erik Bedard, J.D. Drew, Conor Jackson, Trever Miller, David Ortiz, Jonathan Papelbon, Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield.

Drew's name was something of a surprise, since it's widely assumed he'll retire, but in many cases the filing for free agency is a procedural move.

Ortiz and Papelbon will most likely be Type A free agents, meaning the Red Sox will receive two draft picks as compensation if the players are offered arbitration by the Sox but decide to sign with another team. Varitek, as a potential Type B free agent, could land the Red Sox a draft pick.

It was thought that Ortiz' market would be limited to American League teams, since he's spent the last nine seasons as a designated hitter, but the Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo talked to several National League GMs who think N.L. teams might be interested in Ortiz as a first baseman.

"I think more and more teams will look into it," Cafardo quoted an N.L. East GM as saying. "To have that type of bat in the middle of an N.L. lineup at relatively short years and money for that type of production might be worth the defensive deficiency you'd have at first base."

Boston picked up Marco Scutaro's 6 million option for 2012 on Sunday and could pick up Dan Wheeler's 3 million option soon. They have until 11:59 p.m. Monday to decide on Wheeler. If they don't act by then, he will become a free agent as well.

The Red Sox have a window to exclusively negotiate with their own free agents that officially closes on Thursday at 12:01 a.m.