The Red Sox pursuit of a power bat has reportedly led them in the direction of White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network and FanRagSports.com.
Abreu turns 31 in January. The right-handed hitter from Cuba had 33 homers, 102 RBI and 43 doubles last season with a slash line of .304/.354/.552. He's put together four consecutive seasons of 25 or more homers, 100 or more RBI and at least a .290 batting average. As Heyman reported, the Red Sox were in on Abreu when he came from Cuba before he signed with the White Sox in 2014.
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He is arbitration eligible after making $10.8 million in 2017. He can become a free agent after 2019, so the Red Sox would have two years of control on Abreu unless he signs an extension.
The Red Sox and White Sox pulled one of the biggest deals of last offseason when Boston acquired lefty ace Chris Sale for top third base prospect Yoan Moncada and right-handed pitching prospect Michael Kopech. The White Sox are rumored to be interested in Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr.
In this corner, the challenger out of Scranton, Pa., Joltin' Joe Biden...In the other corner, straight out of Queens, the President of the United States, Dandy Donald J. Trump!
The venue: LeLacheur Park, Lowell, Mass., home of the Red Sox Class-A affiliate, the Lowell Spinners.
Ladies and gentlemen, it's The Slasher at LeLacheur!
After the former Vice-President told a crowd at the University of Miami earlier this week of the current President, "If we were in high school, I'd take him behind the gym and beat the hell out of him, President Trump fired back on Twitter Thursday morning.
The Spinners, the Sox' short-season New York-Penn League affiliate, have offered to host a boxing match between the Republican President and Democratic former Vice President on Aug. 17 by the flagpole at LeLacheur. Former light-welterweight champ and Lowell native Micky Ward has agreed to referee.
No word yet if Trump, who'll be 72 by then, or Biden, 75, have accepted the invitation.
The Spinners' press release announcing the invitation says that if the two do accept, "the boxing match will take place regardless of the weather, no matter how stormy it may get."
New Red Sox manager Alex Cora has announced that, as expected, left-hander Chris Sale will be the Opening Day starter when the Red Sox begin their season nine days from now against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla. David Price will pitch the second game and Rick Porcello the third.
Cora told reporters in Fort Myers, Fla. that Eduardo Rodriguez would be in the fourth starter's spot if he's ready as he continues to recover from off-season knee surgery and left-hander Brian Johnson is preparing to be the fifth starter for now.
In Price's second Grapefruit League start on Tuesday, he pitched five innings and allowed two runs on three hits, walked one and struck out four in the Red Sox' 12-6 victory over the Pirates. Third baseman Rafael Devers, hitting .349 this spring, hit his third home run of the spring. Andrew Benintendi (.405) had a double and two RBI and first baseman Sam Travis drove in three.
Sale had a much rougher outing Monday, giving up four runs on five hits, with three walks and six strikeouts in five innings against the Phillies.