Red Sox

Gary DiSarcina honored to hear name mentioned as potential manager


Gary DiSarcina honored to hear name mentioned as potential manager

HOUSTON — The Red Sox on Wednesday said a request has not been made at this point to speak with bench coach Gary DiSarcina about a potential managerial job. NBC Sports on Monday Philadelphia reported DiSarcina as being on “the early list of hot names” for the Phillies gig.

Even if now isn’t the time for DiSarcina, who’s from Billerica, his stock has risen through his first year in Boston (and his first year as a major league bench coach). Were he to depart, it’d be the second straight year the Sox lost a well-liked bench coach. DiSarcina replaced Torey Lovullo before this season.

“It's an honor to have it mentioned,” DiSarcina said, aware of chatter connecting him to the Phillies. “Especially a team like Philadelphia. I’ve known [general manager] Matt Klentak since my time with the Angels, going back five, six years ago.  … You’re still so focused on where you are now. I’m so happy to be here. At the same time, it’s good that other people notice your work and other people notice you and want to talk to you and stuff. 

“It’s hard to really think about [the potential for an interview], because you’re so focused on the Red Sox and getting through this series and moving on, accomplishing our final goal here. But it definitely is exciting, it’s an honor. It’s something if it happens, great, 'cause a lot of times your name comes up in a paper where teams like you, and they want to interview you. But it just doesn’t happen because they find someone else who’s a better fit.”

Sox manager John Farrell fully expects DiSarcina to be on the interview circuit. DiSarcina interviewed to be the Mariners skipper ahead of the 2014 season.

“It’d be great if he has an opportunity,” Farrell said Wednesday. “He’s got a great way to connect with players. He sees the field and the game great. He’s got front office experience to understand what goes into building a roster. Just a really, really good baseball guy.

“I would anticipate with his resume, how he interacts with people, got a great way with people, I would fully expect he would be a candidate.”

DiSarcina appreciates the interview process because of the self-reflection involved. You have to think back on how you got to where you are, and the people who helped and your philosophies.

DiSarcina said coming back to the Sox — he was with the Sox last as Triple-A Pawtucket’s manager in 2013 before joining the Angels — has showed him a different side of Red Sox Nation, one you can’t know unless you’re on the inside.

“The good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between,” DiSarcina said, noting a newfound appreciation for the American League East's competitiveness. “I had a little flashback when we clinched and we were running [to the field on Saturday]. The coaches kind of walk out there, they don’t run out there. And the guys were jumping up and down on each other, and I had a flashback to our first day of camp and being on the field for the first time and just kind of addressing the team, letting them know what the schedule was that day. 

"Seeing all the same faces, at the beginning of the journey and to accomplish goal No. 1 and step No. 1 with this organization, it’s been — the only word I can come up with — it’s been awesome.”

If a request comes in, when would DiSarcina interview? Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said if time allows, interviews can be conducted by other teams during the postseason.

“It’s very dependent on where you are, your playoffs,” Dombrowski said. “I’ve allowed guys to talk between series at times. But it really just depends. If you got one day between series, then the answer is, you wait.”

Report: Ex-Red Sox reliever Reed gets deal with Twins


Report: Ex-Red Sox reliever Reed gets deal with Twins

He was dubbed "Closer B" by Red Sox manager John Farrell when acquired at the trade deadline last summer, now Addison Reed is "Closer B Gone" the Twins.

The right-handed reliever, 29, has agreed to a two-year, $16.75 million free-agent deal with Minnesota, pending a physical, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports and reports. 

Reed began last season with the Mets and had 19 saves and a 2.57 ERA before being traded to the Red Sox, where he had a 3.33 ERA in 29 games (27 innings) without a save as a setup man for Craig Kimbrell.  

Red Sox, Mookie Betts far apart on salary and heading toward arbitration


Red Sox, Mookie Betts far apart on salary and heading toward arbitration

The Red Sox and star right fielder Mookie Betts intend to go to an arbitration hearing in February, and there were signs this was coming even a year ago.

Betts was the only arbitration-eligible player on the Red Sox who did not settle on a contract with the team on Friday, when a deadline arrived for all teams and arbitration-eligible players to exchange 2018 salary figures. Jackie Bradley Jr., Xander Bogaerts and Drew Pomeranz were the biggest names to avoid hearings.

Betts filed for a $10.5 million salary and the Red Sox filed at $7.5 million.  Betts and the Red Sox agreed previously that if no figure could be settled on by the Friday deadline, they would proceed to a hearing, assistant general manager Brian O'Halloran said. 

A three-person panel of arbitrators therefore is set to determine what Betts makes in 2018: either the $7.5 million figure the Sox filed or the $10.5 million figure Betts' camp submitted. The arbitrators won't settle on a midpoint for the parties. 

O'Halloran noted to the Globe there are no hard feelings involved.

Nonetheless, such a large gap would seem to provide incentive to settle. The parties technically could still decide to do so, but that would take a change of course from the present plan. The idea was to settle any time before Friday, and they did not. 

Betts is asking for near-record money for a first-year arbitration eligible player. Kris Bryant set the record Friday with a $10.85 million settlement.

The hearings can be difficult for player-team relations because teams have to make the case in front of the player that he is worth less money than he wants.

Betts, 25, hit .264, with 24 homers, 102 RBI, 25 stolen bases and a .803 OPS in 2017, numbers that fell from his American League MVP runner-up performance in 2016, but were nonetheless very strong and coupled with first-rate defense.

This offseason is Betts' first of arbitration eligibility. In the first three years of service time in a players' career, there's no recourse if you don't like the salary a team is offering. Teams can pay players anything at league minimum or above. 

The only option a player has in those first three years is to make a stand on principle: you can force the team to technically "renew" your salary, which notes to everyone that you did not agree to the salary. Betts and his agents did that in 2017 when the Sox paid him $950,000, a very high amount relative to most contract renewals.

Some of the standard thinking behind forcing a team to renew a contract is that if an arbitration case comes up down the road — and one now looms for Betts — it's supposed to show the arbitrators that the player felt even in seasons past, he was underpaid.

Still, the Sox may have effectively combatted that perception by paying Betts almost $1 million on a renewal. Per USA Today, that $950,000 agreement in 2017 was "the second-highest one-year deal ever for a non-arbitration-eligible player with two-plus years of big league service." Mike Trout got $1 million in 2014.