Having just signed one right-handed bat, the Red Sox reportedly are negotiating for another.
According to a Tweet by former major league GM Jim Bowden -- who now works for ESPN - the Sox are in contract talks with free agent catcherfirst baseman Mike Napoli, who just completed his second season with the Rangers after spending the first five years of his career with the Angels.
The holdup, reports Bowden, is the length of the contract. The Red Sox apparently are offering three years and Napoli, who turned 31 on Halloween, is looking for a four-year deal. Bowden says the Mariners may be willing to offer a fourth year to Napoli, which could force the Red Sox' hand.
Napoli earned 9.4 million last year, so his price tag won't be cheap. Even though his batting average dropped nearly 100 points in 2012 -- from .320 to .227 -- he still hit 24 homers, extending his streak of consecutive seasons with 20 or more homers to five. And while he's only played 19 career games at Fenway Park, he's hit .306 there (19-for-62) with 8 homers, 22 RBI, a .397 on-base percentage, a .710 slugging percentage and a 1.107 OPS.
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while so glad to see Dave Strader getting the play-by-play call in this afternoon’s national NBC broadcast of Stars and Bruins from Dallas.
-- Jeremy Roenick weighs in with some trade possibilities involving Avalanche and Blues players in what could be a blockbuster at the deadline.
-- Antoine Vermette acknowledges his wrongdoing in making a statement about his 10-game suspension for slashing an official, but feels like the punishment was too severe.
-- Don Cherry wishes a happy 40th anniversary to Slap Shot while wearing a Charleston Chiefs jersey as he hosts Coaches Corner.
-- Speaking of Slap Shot, what an Old Time Hockey fight between the AHL's Iowa Wild and Chicago Wolves. It spilled into the hallway afterward . . . that’s when things get real.
-- I've been asked multiple times about the white Boston hat David Pastrnak is always wearing in the Bruins dressing room, so here it is.
-- Here’s all the Dallas Stars info you need ahead of this afternoon’s 11:30 a.m. local start in Dallas for the Stars and Bruins.
-- PHT writer Cam Tucker has Vancouver Canucks GM Jim Benning indicating that the mumps outbreak for his team won’t impact the trade deadline.
-- For something completely different: the headline seems a little click baity to me, but I’ll read about anything involving Homer Simpson and the Baseball Hall of Fame.
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