Red Sox Make Four-Year Offer To Beckett

3:55pm: Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe weighs in, agreeing with Olney's optimism for a deal but saying Beckett's agent currently seeks a five-year extension in excess of John Lackey's $82.5MM.  WEEI's Rob Bradford talked to Beckett, who is mostly staying out of the negotiations between the team and agent Michael Moye.

11:10am: Josh Beckett has a four-year offer on the table from the Red Sox, reports ESPN's Buster Olney.  Olney writes of "optimism a deal will be completed in the next week or two."

Olney envisions a total package in the $65-70MM range.  His colleague Gordon Edes wrote on Saturday that "concerns about Beckett's right shoulder have dissuaded the Red Sox from going to a fifth year."

Beckett projects as one of the best available free agent starters after the 2010 season, and with a strong season he could conceivably get a sixth guaranteed year on the open market.  Cliff Lee, Javier Vazquez, and Brandon Webb will also be eligible for free agency after the season if they're not signed to extesions.