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UPDATE, 6:45 p.m.: Rich Harden is reportedly signing with the Texas Rangers, who also traded Kevin Milwood to the Orioles for relief pitcher (and former closer) Chris Ray.
The Red Sox are said to be eyeing oft-injured starting pitcher Rich Harden, and could sign him to a similar deal they signed Brad Penny and John Smoltz to before last season. Harden is reportedly “willing to sign a one-year deal with a lot of incentives.” According to FoxSports.com’s Jon Paul Morosi, the Red Sox, Yankees, and Mariners are seriously interested in his services.
Last year, Harden earned $7 million with the Cubs last season, going 9-9 with a 4.09 ERA in 26 starts. Still just 28 years old, Harden could be a really nice low-risk, high-reward candidate. While the dollar amount he’s seeking is unknown, Harden could seek the money Brad Penny got from the Cardinals (1 year, $7.5 million), since Penny had a less impressive year in 2009 (11-9, 4.88 ERA).
In other news…
Former hot prospect Ryan Shealy, who has largely been a bust at the major league level, could sign a minor league deal with the Red Sox, based on a tweet by Bob Dutton. Shealy hit .301 with 7 HRs and 20 RBI in just 20 games in 2009.
As we reported earlier, the Sox may also be interested in signing Coco Crisp.
The Yankees kept at least 3/5 of their starting rotation in tact, signing longtime Yankee Andy Pettitte to a one-year deal worth $11.75 million. Pettitte, who will turn 38 next season, finished 14-8 with a 4.16 ERA in 2009.