Cherington On Papelbon, Ortiz, Free Agents

Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington discussed a number of topics with reporters today, and's Rob Bradford has the details in these two posts.  The hot stove highlights…

  • The Red Sox didn't make a formal offer to Jonathan Papelbon, who reached a four-year, $50MM agreement with the Phillies today.  Cherington said he discussed "concepts" of a new contract with Papelbon's agents Sam and Seth Levinson, but didn't make an offer since Papelbon's asking price simply didn't fit into Boston's offseason plans.
  • Cherington said he wasn't given the option of matching the Phillies' offer by Papelbon's representatives, but he didn't think such a step was necessary.
  • Given the number of closing options on the market, Cherington didn't think his team would feel comfortable offering a four-year contract to a closer as the Phillies did with Papelbon.
  • The Red Sox have been talking to David Ortiz's representatives and Cherington said he wants to re-sign the veteran slugger.  "Because of what I feel, and I think he feels, is a little bit more of a defined market for that role it's been easier to engage sooner," Cherington said.  "It's probably less likely to be a situation where he gets into the market and there's something that he's pushed into a corner on. David knows we want him to be here. We want him to be back with the Red Sox. We want him in our lineup. We've had a lot of dialogue to see if there's a way to do that and I think that will continue."
  • Cherington feels that beyond the top free agent starters, there is "a lot of risk" in the pitching market this winter.  "There are options, but riskier and would require some sort of bounce back from injury or bad luck or performance to some degree," the Boston GM said.  "We're going to be exhaustive in looking at ways to build depth to the rotation an the bullpen. We do believe we have some internal options that will help us."

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