UPDATE: Lowell talked to Gordon Edes of the Boston Globe, and denied the report below from the Boston Herald. It doesn’t sound like any extension has been discussed recently.
Yesterday, third baseman Mike Lowell confirmed that his agent has had "casual conversations" with the Red Sox about a contract extension. Lowell, 33, is hitting a solid .304/.355/.489 on the season.
If he reaches free agency, Lowell would be on many teams’ radar. There are really only four third baseman out there this winter: Lowell, Alex Rodriguez, Mike Lamb, and Pedro Feliz. Someone might give Lamb a look in a Wes Helms kind of way. And Feliz brings defense and pop, if not OBP. But for the many teams who can’t afford A-Rod, Lowell would be the best option. The Red Sox, Yankees, Twins, Angels, Phillies, Pirates, Dodgers, and Giants may all be looking for a third baseman this winter.
Lowell has earned $9MM the last couple of years, which at first appeared to be a burden but now looks reasonable. I imagine the Red Sox would be careful with him, maybe offering 2/20 at most. The alternatives would be to chase A-Rod or just move Kevin Youkilis to third and find a first baseman (which is easier to do).