Red Sox

MLB Rumors: Could these two teams pry JBJ from Red Sox?

Red Sox

The Red Sox apparently are getting serious about keeping Jackie Bradley Jr. in Boston -- but they have some competition.

The Sox have "approached" the free-agent outfielder about signing a multi-year deal to stay with the team, WEEI's Rob Bradford reported Sunday.

Bradford also reported the Houston Astros have "strong interest" in signing Bradley and that an American League Central club has the 30-year-old "at the top of its wish list."

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Bradley reportedly garnered interest ahead of this year's MLB trade deadline, but the Red Sox opted not to deal him despite also not discussing a potential contract extension with their homegrown center fielder.

Chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom and his staff apparently are hopeful they can bring Bradley back for a ninth season, but that will be much more challenging now that he's on the open market.

Bradley is coming off one of his best statistical seasons: He posted a career-high .283 batting average with seven home runs and 22 RBIs in 55 games. The 2018 Gold Glover also is one of the best defensive center fielders in baseball, so he can add value to a contender regardless of whether he's hot or cold at the plate.

The Astros are well aware of Bradley's offensive ceiling: He was named the 2018 AL Championship Series MVP after driving in nine runs in five games against Houston.