Red Sox

MLB rumors: Yankees "hesitant" to sign free agent Nathan Eovaldi

MLB rumors: Yankees "hesitant" to sign free agent Nathan Eovaldi

The New York Yankees need to upgrade their starting pitching and MLB free agency is one place to do it, but they won't go crazy to sign just anyone from what's considered a pretty weak class among starters.

One of the best pitchers available is Nathan Eovaldi, who spent the last half of the 2018 season with the Boston Red Sox and played an important role in helping them win the World Series. 

The Yankees reportedly are interested in Eovaldi, but Joel Sherman of the New York Post outlined why New York is "hesitant" about bringing him back to the Bronx.

"But the Yanks appear hesitant to reunite with Eovaldi if he really is going to get a four-year contract, even if it is from the Red Sox, the team that beat them in the AL East and the Division Series," Sherman wrote. "And they have found the asking prices for an Indians starter too high."

If the Yankees don't aggressively pursue Eovaldi, he could still land a huge payday because as many as nine teams reportedly are interested in his services.

The Red Sox like Eovaldi, but it would behoove them to be cautious if the term gets out of control. He was very good for the Red Sox in the playoffs -- 2-1 with a 1.61 ERA over six appearances -- but his injury history. which includes two Tommy John surgeries, should be concern when discussing a contract beyond just a couple of seasons.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

Mookie Betts doesn't expect to sign contract extension with Red Sox

Mookie Betts doesn't expect to sign contract extension with Red Sox

After Mike Trout signed a gargantuan contract extension with the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday -- the largest in North American sports, to be exact -- many wondered if Mookie Betts would follow suit and re-up with the Boston Red Sox.

Those people can wonder no longer.

Speaking openly about his contract situation Wednesday in Fort Myers, Betts insisted he's not interested in signing an extension before his contract expires and wants to become an unrestricted free agent following the 2020 season.

"That’s exactly what I expect. I don’t expect anything to happen till I’m a free agent," Betts said when asked if he expects to enter this season without a long-term contract, via The Boston Globe's Alex Speier.

Betts also confirmed he rejected the Red Sox's contract extension offer following the 2017 season, reportedly valued at eight years and $200 million.

With Trout inking a ridiculous $35.8-million-per-year contract on the heels of Bryce Harper and Manny Machado's megadeals, Betts probably can maximize his value by testing the free-agent market rather than signing an extension. Case in point: In a column published Wednesday, The Athletic's Jayson Stark revealed an American League executive told him Betts earning a $500 million contract is "a possibility."

Still, the reigning American League MVP wasn't interested in speculating how Trout's deal could affect his price tag.

"I don’t think it really impacts me that much," Betts said, via WEEI.com's Rob Bradford. "But it definitely is something positive that is going on in the game and hopefully there is more of it.

"We’re different players. Different players do different things. We do different things."

Betts added he won't ignore the Red Sox's negotiation efforts over the next year-plus, but it sounds like he doesn't want to get undersold, either.

"You can definitely (keep) your ears open and see what's said. But that doesn't mean you necessarily have to agree on or take whatever is given," Betts said, via The Globe's Pete Abraham.

"But I love it here. This is a great place to be, to spend your career here. That doesn't mean you sell yourself short."

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Dustin Pedroia: Red Sox are "scared" to have me on Opening Day roster

Dustin Pedroia: Red Sox are "scared" to have me on Opening Day roster

Dustin Pedroia can comprehend why the Boston Red Sox are placing him on the injury list to start the season.

But that doesn't mean he has to agree with it.

Shortly after Red Sox manager Alex Cora announced Monday that Pedroia won't be on the Opening Day roster as he rehabs a knee injury, the second baseman offered his side of the story.

"It is what it is. I didn’t really think about it. I think the whole thing, I don’t think the team was expecting me to come in and look the way I looked," Pedroia told reporters Monday in Fort Myers, via WEEI.com. "They just want to make sure they do it right. That’s basically it."

Pedroia appeared in just three games last season after undergoing cartilage restoration knee surgery in October 2017. The Red Sox have played it safe with the 35-year-old this spring, limiting him to four Grapefruit League games and five or fewer innings in each of those contests.

Pedroia may argue the club is being a little too cautious.

"They have had to hold me back. I’m ready for Opening Day. It’s just they’re scared," Pedroia added.

"No one has ever come back from something like this. They want me to make sure I follow the right steps to do that and make sure everyone is 100 percent confident that when I come back, I come back and stay back and not have any issues.

"... I feel like I’m ready. It’s just they just want to see how my knee responds when I do that, which I understand. We’ll just go from there. It’s only, I think, a week or something, the plan that they set. If it’s being smart for a week and we make sure I respond great to everything thrown at me then it’s a good decision."

Boston has the luxury of not rushing Pedroia, as Brock Holt and Eduardo Nunez can split time at second base in his absence. Whether the 14-year veteran still has good baseball in him remains to be seen, but he at least wants a chance to prove himself as soon as possible.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.