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American League

The Door is Open for a D’Backs, Martinez Reunion

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The Boston Red Sox and free-agent outfielder J.D. Martinez have provided some of the very few headlines of this offseason.  Both sides parallel the trending gap between clubs and players.  The Red Sox are reported to be offering a contract similar to Yoenis Céspedes received from the New York Mets last offseason (4 year, $110 million).

Martinez is rumored to be seeking more years and a higher AAV then what is currently on the table from Boston.  J.D. Martinez is coming off a season in which he hit 45 HR’s and drove in 104 RBI’s with the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks.

The Red Sox are looking to add more power to a lineup that finished last in the American League in HR’s.  The Sox and Martinez have been linked as an ideal pair since the beginning of the offseason, yet neither side can agree to deal.

On July 18, 2017 the Tigers decided to trade their star to the Diamondbacks for prospects.  J.D. Martinez flourished in his unearthed pennant race.  Martinez provided many big home runs down the stretch for the D’backs in route to their first playoff appearance since 2011.

The D’backs lost in three to the eventual National League Champion Los Angeles Dodgers.  However, the season was deemed a success.  Martinez was considered a rental player for the small market club.

Arizona ranks 16th in team payroll with Zack Grienke’s AAV of $34 million taking up 28% of the team’s $118 million (figures provided by Spotrac).  Perennial All-Star Paul Goldschmidt is set to become a free agent after the 2019 season and will get a significant raise from someone.  If this were a normal offseason the D’backs would certainly be out of the J.D. sweepstakes.

The market for Martinez has taken his free agency into February.  Pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training for all 30 teams throughout next week.  Martinez has been reported to be willing to wait out Boston or any club for that matter beyond Spring Training.

Discussions between Martinez and the Red Sox appear to be at a halt.  The Red Sox have given no inclination to go beyond their current offer.  Martinez is determined to get more than what the Sox have put on the table.  Enter the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Martinez enjoyed a great deal of success in his limited time in the desert during last season, and a reunion now seems feasible.  Arizona’s time to win is now with the aging Greinke and free agency looming for Goldschmidt.  Arizona coming off of a 93-win season and re-signing Martinez would be formidable even in the tough NL West.

The D’backs cannot win a bidding war with the Red Sox.  Yet, the current market paired with the Sox unwillingness to big against themselves opens a door for Arizona.  The D’backs could offer Martinez a deal similar to the contract the Mets gave Céspedes (4 year, $110 million).  The ideal way to tailor the offer to Martinez’s liking would be to offer an opt-out after the first season.

This would give Martinez both years and dollars while giving him an outlet to re-enter free agency should he choose to after this season.  This agreement would return a big bat to heart of an already dangerous lineup.

The opportunity for Arizona is now.  The current economic climate in baseball has created a competitive balance for Arizona to outmaneuver Boston.  The D’backs cannot afford to let Martinez slither his way to Boston.

 

American League

Indians Activate Francisco Lindor, DFA Hanley Ramirez

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The Cleveland Indians have activated star shortstop Francisco Lindor from the injured list on Saturday.

In a corresponding move, the Indians have designated veteran Hanley Ramirez for assignment to create the necessary roster spot for the return of Lindor.

Ramirez, 35, appeared in 16 games this season for Cleveland, posting a slash line of .184/.298/.327 with two home runs.

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American League

Red Sox Place Nathan Eovaldi On 10-Day IL

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The Boston Red Sox have placed starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi on the 10-day injured list due to a loose body in his elbow, according to MassLive.com’s Crhsi Cotillo.

In a corresponding move, left hander Bobby Poyner will take Eovaldi’s spot on the roster and the move is retroactive to April 18th.

The struggling Red Sox will have to move forward without Eovaldi, who missed around 2 months last season following arthroscopic surgery to remove a loose body, for the time being.

Eovaldi has started 4 games for Boston this season, going 0-0 and posting a 6.00 ERA in that span.

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American League

Red Sox Call Up Top Prospect Chavis

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Top Red Sox prospect Michael Chavis was recalled for the first time on Friday.

With two infielders being placed on the DL and desperate for any kind of spark they can get, the Boston Red Sox called up their top prospect Michael Chavis (MLB no. 75) from Triple-A Pawtucket on Friday.

Dustin Pedroia and Eduardo Nunez were both placed on the disabled list this week with knee and back injuries, respectively. And with super utility man Brock Holt out as well with an eye injury, Boston’s infield has become quite depleted in a hurry. Infielder Tzu-Wei Lin was recalled as well as the stumbling Red Sox open up a three game set in Tampa with a Good Friday matchup.

Boston hasn’t yet announced if Chavis will be in the lineup tonight, but the team is evidently hoping that the presence of the 23-year-old can provide some kind of a spark. Boston has struggled considerably so far in the young season and is coming off consecutive embarrassing losses to arch-rival New York. At 6-13, the defending World Series champs are dead last in the AL East.

Chavis, on the other hand, has risen through Boston’s minor league system quickly despite a setback last season. A PED suspension cost him half of 2018 after he was busted for Turinabol, an anabolic-androgenic steroid. He denied knowingly taking any banned substance but played well enough after his return to be promoted from Double-A to Triple-A.

Can Chavis provide a boost for the struggling Sox and help them shake off their World Series hangover?

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