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New Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine flew to the Dominican Republic soon after meeting with the media Thursday. He went there meet with free agent designated hitter David Ortiz on a “recruiting trip.”
The Red Sox have offered Ortiz arbitration, and the slugger has until Dec. 7 to accept. Should he accept, he would get a one-year deal with an automatic raise (more than $12.5 million). If he declines, he would be eligible for a multi-year deal with any team (the Blue Jays and Orioles have shown interest), and the Red Sox would receive a first round draft pick as compensation if he leaves.
My guess is that Valentine is asking Big Papi to accept arbitration for one more chance to win it all with the Red Sox, which would be better than Ortiz insisting on receiving a three-year deal from the team, which would take him through his Age 38 season (that’s not a good thing).
Johnny Damon and Tim Wakefield were also in the Dominican for the David Ortiz Celebrity Golf Classic. The 45-year-old Wakfield again expressed his desire to return to the Red Sox for one more season. He is seven wins away from the Red Sox all-time record.
The 38-year-old Damon, meanwhile, told reporters he’d like to return to the Rays.