The Red Sox are talking with free agent Adam LaRoche, two sources tell Jen Royle of SB Nation Boston (via Twitter). LaRoche is seeking a three-year deal and a third source tells Royle that he's still not willing to compromise on contract length.
LaRoche would be the alternative to signing Mike Napoli, but major league sources tell Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports that Boston would prefer to complete their deal with the backstop. The Red Sox haven't given any official word on why the deal with Napoli hasn't been completed, but sources say that an issue with one of Napoli's hips has given the club pause. There's an agreement in place for a three-year, $39MM deal, but the Red Sox could simply walk from it since it has not been finalized.
If the Red Sox did sign LaRoche, Rosenthal writes that Napoli would go back into the market and likely accept a shorter, cheaper deal, possibly from the Rangers. The Nationals would fill the void internally by moving Michael Morse to first base and go with an outfield of Bryce Harper in left, Denard Span in center, and Jayson Werth in right. However, Napoli remains Boston's preference in part because signing LaRoche would cost a second-round pick.
The Napoli problem is familiar territory for Boston as they put language in the contracts of right fielder J.D. Drew and right-hander John Lackey to protect from pre-existing medical conditions. According to sources, the Red Sox are working to get Napoli to agree to similar protection in his deal.