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Red Sox Close To Deal With Mike Napoli

9:59am: While no financial details have been reported on the deal Napoli and the Sox are working toward, Abraham tweets that it sounds as if Boston paid a larger annual salary to get a three-year contract done, rather than a four-year pact.

9:38am: The Red Sox are closing in on an agreement with Mike Napoli, according to WEEI.com's Rob Bradford. Bradford reports that the deal would likely be for three years. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe had reported earlier this morning that the Sox were "working hard" to land Napoli (Twitter link), while Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe says (via Twitter) that Sox officials are talking about Napoli as if he's part of the team.

Napoli had a down year by his standards for the Rangers in 2012, hitting .227/.343/.469. However, he has a career .863 OPS, and is one season removed from a .320/.414/.631 line. While Boston likely doesn't expect him to produce at that level again, the team would make him its primary first base option, according to Bradford. Cafardo tweets that the 31-year-old would also catch occasionally if he joins the Sox.

Napoli ranked 14th on MLBTR's list of 2012's top 50 free agents.

Originally published on December 3rd at 9:39am.

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