Both the Boston Red Sox and Mike Napoli aren’t talking. The sensitivity around Napoli’s reported hip ailment – the Seattle Mariners have backed away as well – and the scarcity of quality first basemen remaining have both parties skittish and close-mouthed. Speaking to NESN.com, Sox Assistant GM said, “I can’t comment on that specifically. Nothing new from what Ben said the last time he spoke with [the media]. We continue to talk to a number of free agents and the conversations are ongoing as Ben alluded to previously.” Enter Adam Laroche.
Multiple media reports including the Dallas Morning News and MassLive are reporting that not only have the Napoli negotiations continued to proceed at a snail’s pace but it also appears Boston is moving on a contingency plan involving Adam LaRoche.
In 2012 LaRoche smacked a career high 33 homers and tied his Arizona Diamondbacks RBI total of 100. On the downside, he also blew away his previous strike out total of 142, striking out 172 times last season. Further complicating the LaRoche negotiations are his demands for a three-year or better deal and a second round draft pick to Washington that Boston would have to give up.
LaRoche played six games as a member of the Red Sox in 2009 when he ping-ponged around between three different teams during that season.
Napoli appears hobbled – literally and figuratively – and Boston needs a first baseman — badly. As Boston’s options continue to dwindle, LaRoche may become a must-have piece of the puzzle if they’re serious about turning their back on 2012.
I know you’re hopin’ to find
Someone who’s gonna give you peace of mind
- Second Hand News, Fleetwood Mac