Redskins

Red Sox avoid arbitration with 7, sign Ellsbury

Red Sox avoid arbitration with 7, sign Ellsbury

BOSTON (AP) The Boston Red Sox signed Jacoby Ellsbury to a one-year contract on Friday, avoiding arbitration with the outfielder.

The oft-injured Ellsbury, 29, a 2011 All-Star, saw a drop in his production last year, finishing with a .271 average, four home runs and 26 RBIs. He will make $9 million, a year after making $8.05 million.

Ellsbury missed 79 games after suffering a right shoulder subluxation April 13. He returned to the lineup July 13 and played in 67 games. In 2011, he was named American League Comeback Player of the Year, and established career highs in home runs (32), run (119), hits (212), and RBIs (105).

The Red Sox also agreed to terms with right-handers Alfredo Aceves ($2.65 million), Andrew Bailey ($4.1 million), Daniel Bard ($1.86 million), and Joel Hanrahan ($7.04 million), as well as left-handers Andrew Miller ($1.47 million), and Franklin Morales ($1.48 million), to one-year, non-guaranteed contracts.

Boston left-hander Craig Breslow is the last player eligible for salary arbitration still unsigned. If he remains without a deal, arbitration hearings can start next month. Breslow made $1.79 million last season. He asked for $2.37 million, and was offered $2.32 million.

Aceves, 30, who shifted over to the closer role last season after Bailey was injured, posted a career-high 25 saves, as the Red Sox stumbled to a 69-93 season. He finished second among AL relievers with 84 innings, and closed with a 2-10 mark. Aceves asked for $3 million, was offered $2.3 million and settled for the midpoint.

Hanrahan, 31, who made the All-Star team twice as a closer in Pittsburgh, was acquired by the Red Sox Dec. 26. He went 5-2 with a 2.72 ERA and 67 strikeouts last season, posting 36 saves. He made $4.1 million last season.

Bailey, 28, appeared in just 19 games due to right thumb surgery, posting a 1-1 record with six saves.

Bard, 27, made the first 10 starts of his career, going 5-6 for the Red Sox with a 6.22 ERA.

Miller, 27, went 3-2 with a 3.35 ERA and 51 strikeouts, posting a career high for holds (13).

And Morales, 26, made nine starts in his first full season.

The Red Sox lost their final eight games last season, forcing a managerial change for the second time in as many years. Out went Bobby Valentine, in came John Farrell. Under Valentine, Boston finished 26 games behind the division-champion New York Yankees in the AL East.

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PIC: Adrian Peterson has arrived at Redskins Park

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USA TODAY Sports

PIC: Adrian Peterson has arrived at Redskins Park

With Derrius Guice out for the season and Samaje Perine and Byron Marshall both sustaining injuries during the Redskins' Week 2 preseason game vs. the Jets, the Burgundy and Gold may be in need of some help at running back. Enter seven-time Pro Bowler Adrian Peterson.

One of the best running backs to ever play the game, Peterson has rushed for 12,276 yards and 99 touchdowns over a 11-year career.

Peterson's visit is part of the team's contingency plan if they do indeed become very thing at the running back position. Jamaal Charles and Orleans Darkwa have also been at Redskins Park for visits. 

"Well we want to bring them in to get physicals on them just in case,” said Gruden.  

Nonetheless, the thought of having Adrian Peterson in a Redskins uniform is exciting. 

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Alex Smith believes that his Redskins teammates are 'all in'

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Associated Press

Alex Smith believes that his Redskins teammates are 'all in'

During the offseason program and training camp we have seen ample evidence that Alex Smith’s teammates have great respect for their new quarterback. Speaking to the media on Sunday, Smith said that the respect is mutual. 

While saying that, nobody really knows how the team will respond when the games count and the pressure is on, but Smith likes what he has seen so far. 

“I think we’ve got guys that are all in,” he said. “We’ve got a bunch of guys that are committed, and I don’t think that’s the case everywhere. I think a lot of times it’s easy not to invest because it’s scary to put yourself out there knowing you might not succeed. I think we’ve got a bunch of guys who are all in, really invested in what we’re doing here, and I think that’s all you can ask for. We’ve got a tough team that’s not afraid of competition, not afraid to toe the line. I think that’s been apparent through camp. Like I said, the proof’s in the pudding. You’ve got to go do it when it really matters.”

Of course, it’s smart to be complimentary of your new teammates when you are under contract with the organization for the next five years, and Smith is nothing if not smart. Still, Smith didn’t seem to be blowing smoke when he talked about how he formed his opinion about the team. 

“I think it’s an accumulation going back to April up to this date,” said Smith. “It’s how he conducts himself, how he carries himself in the locker room, in the film room, in the training room, in the weight room, on the practice field, when you’re in camp riding the shuttle bus together. I mean, you can tell, I think, how invested guys are. You can tell who’s real, who’s authentic. That quickly becomes apparent when you put all those things together. You can see what guys are really made of and who’s faking it. We’ve got a bunch of guys that are all in.”

For the last several years, the Redskins have talked a lot about drafting and signing players with character, guys who as Smith put it are “all in”. They haven’t always hit the mark, but they have collected players like Brandon Scherff, Jonathan Allen, Josh Norman, and others who love the game more than they love what they can get from the game (i.e. a big paycheck). 

To be sure, dysfunction involving players is not entirely a thing of the past. There has been occasional drama such as the sudden Su’a Cravens departure last year, but most NFL team have occasional situations and the Redskins are not one of the teams frequently making headlines for the wrong reasons. 

Smith is another one of those high character guys and he is recognizing that in the approach of many of his teammates. 

This all sounds great in August and, as Smith noted, we won’t really know how the high character will translate when they’re in a tight game during the season. But for right now, it’s good that the quarterback has confidence in his teammates and that could count for something when the chips are down in December. 

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Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter  @TandlerNBCS and on Instagram @RichTandler