Report: David Ortiz ‘Likely’ to Test Free Agent Market as Contract Talks With Red Sox Stall

Report: David Ortiz 'Likely' to Test Free Agent Market as Contract Talks With Red Sox StallIt seemed all but certain that David Ortiz would be returning to Fenway Park as a member of the Red Sox in 2013. Now, that’s certainly still a possibility, but there is a chance that Ortiz tests the free agent market first.

It is looking “likely” that Big Papi will not agree to a new deal with the Sox during the team’s exclusive negotiating window, at which point he could hit the open market, according to WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford. That is in line with a report from The Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo that stated the team and the designated hitter were “not very close” to working out terms of a new deal.

While it had been previously reported that the Sox were in fact close to locking Ortiz down for a two-year contract, the two sides may now have been unable to agree on financials. Still, the team can extend a one-year qualifying offer to Ortiz in the neighborhood of $13.3 million, which he could either accept or decline and become a free agent.

The deadline for the Red Sox to make a qualifying offer is 5 p.m. on Friday, and Ortiz would have until Nov. 9 to accept or decline. If he were to decline and sign with another team, Boston would receive a supplemental pick in the draft.