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SoxProspects News

December 28, 2008 at 10:45 PM

Sox bring back Josh Bard

According to the Providence Journal, the Red Sox have signed free-agent C Josh Bard to a non-guaranteed one-year contract worth $1.7 million. The deal could be worth up to $2.5 million including incentives in 2009, and includes a club option for 2010. Bard spent last season with the San Diego Padres, putting up .202/.279/.270 numbers to go with 9 doubles, 1 home run, and 16 RBI in 178 at bats. He was originally acquired by the Red Sox following the 2005 season alongside Coco Crisp and David Riske in a trade that sent Kelly Shoppach, Guillermo Mota, and Andy Marte to Cleveland. Bard played in only 7 games with Boston in 2006 before being dealt to San Diego with Cla Meredith in exchange for Doug Mirabelli.

A six-year veteran, the switch-hitting Bard owns career .265/.333/.395 numbers with 28 home runs and 168 RBI in 431 games played with Cleveland, Boston, and San Diego. At this point, Bard is not expected to be the Red Sox' starting catcher, although he may compete for the job depending on who else the Red Sox add this off season.
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at 10:20 PM

Sox sign Brad Penny

In an effort to bolster their starting rotation, the Red Sox have reportedly signed veteran RHP Brad Penny to a one-year contract. According to Sean McAdam of the Boston Herald, the deal would pay Penny a base salary of $5 million, with the potential to earn $3 million more if he pitches at least 160 innings. Penny, 29, made only 17 starts last season due to shoulder injuries, although he did not require surgery, producing a 6-9 record, a 6.28 ERA and 51 strikeouts to go along with 42 walks in 94.2 innings pitched.

The Red Sox will be hoping Penny returns to his 2007 form, when he was an All-Star and posted a 16-4 record with a 3.03 ERA in 208 innings pitched. Penny struck out 135 batters that year while walking 73, and gave up only 9 home runs all season. Penny owns a 94-75 record with a 4.06 ERA, 1032 strikeouts and 475 walks over his 9-year career with the Florida Marlins and L.A. Dodgers. He will likely compete with Justin Masterson and Clay Buchholz for the final spot in Boston's starting rotation alongside Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Daisuke Matsuzaka, and Tim Wakefield.
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December 23, 2008 at 3:40 PM

Red Sox lose out to Yankees on Mark Teixeira

According to Buster Olney of ESPN.com, highly coveted free agent 1B Mark Teixeira has reached an agreement on an eight-year contract with the New York Yankees. The deal is believed to be worth between $170 and $180 million, and includes a $5 million signing bonus and a full no-trade clause. Teixeira had also received offers from the Red Sox, Baltimore Orioles, Los Angeles Angels, and Washington Nationals before opting to accept a late offer from New York. On Thursday, Red Sox principal owner John Henry said the Red Sox had been outbid for Teixeira and were "not going to be a factor" in signing him, although the team was believed to have remained as serious suitors for the slugger. The Angels pulled their offer off the table Sunday night.

Teixeira, 28, put together a combined .308/.410/.552 line with 41 doubles, 33 home runs, and 121 RBI in 157 games last season, splitting time between the Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Angels. Teixeira also put together a .467/.550/.467 line in 4 games during the Angels’ 2008 divisional series match-up against the Red Sox. Because Teixeira was a Type A Free Agent, the Angels will receive the Yankee’s first-round selection (approximately 26th overall) in the 2009 Draft. The Angels will also receive a pick in the first supplemental round (approximately 44th overall) as compensation for losing Teixeira. New York has also surrendered its second round pick to the Milwaukee Brewers for signing LHP CC Sabathia, as well as their third round pick to the Toronto Blue Jays for signing RHP AJ Burnett.

A two-time Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Award winner and 2005 American League All-Star, Teixeira was originally chosen out of high school by the Red Sox in the ninth round (265th overall) of the 1998 Draft, but did not sign. He was later selected fifth overall by the Texas Rangers in 2001 after an impressive college career with Georgia Tech. The Severna Park, Maryland native has career .290/.378/.541 numbers with 203 home runs and 676 RBI in 6 seasons with Texas, Atlanta, and Los Angeles.
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December 22, 2008 at 5:59 PM

Red Sox announce 2009 minor league coaches

The Red Sox organization announced its minor league coaching staffs for the 2009 season today. New to the organization are Dick Such, who will be the pitching coach for Salem, Kevin Walker, who will fill the same role for Lowell, and trainer David Herrera, who will also do his work for Lowell. According to redsox.com, the teams will be staffed as follows:

Pawtucket (AAA) will once again be managed by Ron Johnson, alongside pitching coach Rich Sauveur, hitting coach Russ Morman, and trainer Greg Barajas.

The Portland Seadogs (AA) retain manager Arnie Beyeler, pitching coach Mike Cather, hitting coach Dave Joppie, and trainer Jon Jochim as the team attempts to return to the Eastern League playoffs in 2009.

First-year Sox affiliate Salem (High-A) will be led by manager Chad Epperson, who will be joined by Such and hitting coach Carlos Febles. The team's head trainer will be Paul Buccheit, who held the same post last season with Greenville.

The Low-A Greenville Drive will see another season from manager Kevin Boles, pitching coach Bob Kipper, and hitting coach Billy McMillon. They will be joined by trainer Brandon Henry, who was the head trainer for Lowell last season.

Lowell (Short-Season) will be managed once again by Gary DiSarcina, who will welcome Walker and Herrera to join returning hitting coach Luis Lopez.

The Gulf Coast League Red Sox (Rookie) will see 2008 coach Dave Tomlin become the team's manager. He will be joined by pitching coach Walter Miranda, who held the same post for Lowell during the 2008 season, and hitting coach U.L. Washington. The team's trainer has yet to be announced.

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December 19, 2008 at 4:04 PM

Zach Nicholson joins SoxProspects.com

SoxProspects.com added another staff writer to its lineup on Friday, bringing on Zachary Nicholson as a blogger and a member of the Red Sox coverage team.

Zach resides in Cambridge after graduating from Northeastern University with a degree in Journalism. He has a self-proclaimed "psychotic" knowledge base of all things Red Sox.
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December 12, 2008 at 7:17 PM

Cash non-tendered

With tonight's midnight deadline approaching, the Red Sox declined to tender a contract to C Kevin Cash, making him a free agent. Signed as a minor league free agent in 2007, Cash spent the bulk of that season with Pawtucket and made 12 appearances with the big league club, before spending 2008 as C Jason Varitek's backup and serving as RHP Tim Wakefield's primary catcher. Cash performed admirably behind the plate but struggled in the batters box posting a .225/.309/.338 (.647 OPS) line with three home runs and seven doubles in 142 at-bats 0ver 61 games in 2008 ... 1B Kevin Youkilis, RHP Jonathan Papelbon and LHP Javier Lopez were tendered contracts, the remaining unsigned players may have their contracts renewed.
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December 11, 2008 at 4:09 PM

Sox select Gonzalez in Rule 5 Draft

On Thursday afternoon the Red Sox selected right-handed pitcher Miguel Gonzalez with the 18th pick of the 2008 Rule 5 Draft. Gonzalez throws a decent low 90s fastball with excellent command, as well as a slider and a change-up. He missed all of the 2008 season with a knee injury, but has impressed in the Mexican Pacific League this off-season. Pursuant to Major League Rule 6, he'll need to remain on Boston's 25-man roster (or the disabled list) for the entire 2009 season, or he will need to be offered back to the Angels. Chances are that Gonzalez will not make the team out of spring training, but with relief pitchers, there's aways a chance that the team can catch lightning in a bottle.

In the Triple-A phase, Boston selected pitchers Jason Rice and Miguel Marquez. Both are raw pitchers with a lot of potential, and will likely play in the lower levels of the system next season. Rice played for Kannapolis (CWS) in 2008, and Marquez missed the season with an injury. Marquez was once a well-regarded prospect in the Seattle system.

The Red Sox did not lose any players in the draft.

In other news, the Red Sox sent Beau Vaughan to Texas as a PTBNL in an earlier trade for Wes Littleton. There will reportedly be another PTBNL to complete that deal in the future. One thing that
could mean is that that player is a 2008 draft pick, as those players cannot be traded until early January.
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at 12:10 PM

Red Sox Rule 5 Eligibles

The following Red Sox minor-leaguers are eligible to be selected in today's Rule 5 Draft:

Juan Apodaca, Bubba Bell, Zach Borowiak, Jose Capellan, Robert Coello, Jeff Corsalettii, Sean Danielson, Andrew Dobies, William Durazo*, Zak Farkes, Kyle Fernandes, Javier Garcia, Rafael Gil, Matt Goodson, Mickey Hall, Tommy Hottovy, Jimmy James, Mike James, Jay Johnson, Chris Jones, TJ Large, Will Latimer, Blake Maxwell, Paul McAnulty, Marcus McBeth, Dan Miceli*, Jeff Natale, John Otness, Ryan Phillips*, Bryan Pritz, Mike Rozier, Ryan Schroyer*, Luis Segovia, Roberto Sosa*, Iggy Suarez, Billy Traber, Jose Vaquedano, Beau Vaughn, Gil Velazquez, Yahmed Yema, and Armando Zerpa (* - Restricted List).

It's speculated that
Beau Vaughan and Paul McAnulty are the two players that might be drafted by other teams. Theo Epstien has indicated that the Sox will likely not make a selection in the major league portion of today's draft.
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December 4, 2008 at 3:54 PM

Sox officially sign Tazawa

The Boston Red Sox officially announced the signing of Japanese RHP Junichi Tazawa this afternoon. Tazawa, 22, spent the last four seasons with Nippon Oil ENEOS of the Japan Industrial league. He posted a 13-1 record with 5 saves and an 0.80 ERA, while striking out 115 batters against 15 walks in 113 innings this past season. A highly-sought-after international signing, Tazawa reportedly turned down more lucrative offers from other teams for the chance to pitch with his idol Daisuke Matsuzaka.

Terms of the deal

Signing Bonus - $1,800,000
2009 - $450,000
2010 - $500,000
2011 - $550,000
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December 3, 2008 at 3:42 PM

Pedroia signs six year extension

The Red Sox have signed reigning American League MVP Dustin Pedroia to a six year, $40.5-million contract extension, including a seventh-year club option worth $11 million. Pedroia, who also took home Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Awards in 2008, would have only been eligible to receive a league-minimum salary, $400,000, for the 2009 season due to his two plus years of service time, and would have been locked into arbitration for another three seasons after 2009. By signing the contract, Pedroia guarantees six years of his contract, but gives up two potential years of free agency, which would he would have been eligible for in the 2012-2013 off-season.

According to the Boston Globe, the deal includes a $1.5-million signing bonus and breaks down as follows:

Base salaries
2009 - $1.5 million
2010 - $3.5 million
2011 - $5.5 million
2012 - $8 million
2013 - $10 million
2014 - $10 million
2015 - $11 million (club option or a $500,000 buyout)
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December 1, 2008 at 10:15 AM

Dana-Farber's Red Sox themed holiday cards, candles and ornaments on sale to help fight cancer


BOSTON – A festive collection of holiday cards, candles and ornaments -- including many with a Red Sox theme -- is now on sale to support adult and pediatric cancer care and research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston. One hundred percent of sales benefit Dana-Farber through its Jimmy Fund.

There are 18 different designs, including artwork of a snowfall at Fenway Park and a snowy game of baseball between snowmen and gingerbread men -- with Santa as the umpire, in the 2008 card collection to wish friends, colleagues and family Seasons Greetings, Merry Christmas or Happy Hanukkah. Some designs were created by Dana-Farber patients. Each box costs $25 and includes 20 cards of the same design and 21 envelopes. Purchase three or more boxes of cards and receive a FREE limited-edition Red Sox Santa Hat! Just enter promo code: HOLIDAY at check out. Offer valid while supplies last.

The 2008 collection also includes three limited edition Aunt Sadie’s candles with specially designed Red Sox and Patriots themed labels, offered in pine, juniper fir and bayberry scents. There are two ornaments for sale; one for Sox fans, the other for Patriots enthusiasts. All of these items are $20 each.

Visit www.jimmyfund.org/holidaygreetings to view the entire 2008 holiday card, candle, ornament, and apparel collection and to make an online purchase. The cards will be sold in Crate & Barrel retail stores throughout Massachusetts and the entire collection will be sold in the Dana-Farber lobby at 44 Binney Street in Boston from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Imprinting of company logos and customized messages are available for inside the cards and on envelopes for an additional fee. Orders will be accepted until January 2009. Delivery takes two to three weeks. Call Monica Zurlinden at 617-582-7724 to place an order.

Founded in 1948, the Jimmy Fund has been an official charity of the Boston Red Sox since 1953. It supports the fight against cancer at Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, which is a leading cancer research and care center for adults and children. Unrestricted support from the Jimmy Fund is an integral part of Mission Possible: The Dana-Farber Campaign to Conquer Cancer, a $1 billion capital campaign to accelerate cancer research, speed development of life-saving therapies, and expand the Institute's signature patient- and family-centered care.

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (www.dana-farber.org) is a principal teaching affiliate of the Harvard Medical School and is among the leading cancer research and care centers in the United States. It is a founding member of the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center (DF/HCC), designated a comprehensive cancer center by the National Cancer Institute.
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