The Red Sox have reportedly made a contract offer to Jarrod Saltalamacchia, although it’s likely that things are just getting started.
It still takes two to tango, and CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman reports that there is no indication that Saltalamacchia and the Red Sox are close to a deal. Therefore, according to Heyman, the Red Sox are continuing to talk with multiple free-agent catchers, including Brian McCann, Carlos Ruiz and A.J. Pierzynski.
According to reports, the Red Sox would like Saltalamacchia back on a two-year deal. That would seemingly bridge the gap to Boston’s top catching prospects, Christian Vazquez and Blake Swihart. But the Red Sox’ offer to Saltalamacchia is believed to be for something less than $10 million a year, according to Heyman, and that might not be too appealing for a 28-year-old catcher coming off a career year.
There are certainly plenty of teams looking for a catcher. The Yankees, Rangers, Angels, Blue Jays, Rockies and Twins could all be involved in the free-agent market to some degree, according to Heyman, and that could ultimately lead to there being more openings than viable options. McCann figures to be the most expensive option, with reports indicating that the seven-time All-Star is looking for a lucrative five-year deal.
McCann’s agent indicated recently that his client would certainly consider the Red Sox, as the catcher has always been intrigued by Boston’s fan base. Ruiz is coming off a down year, but would represent a nice veteran option should the Red Sox not agree to a deal with Saltalamacchia. Pierzynski, meanwhile, is a wild card, as his dubious reputation often supersedes his on-field production.
WEEI.com’s Alex Speier reports that Saltalamacchia is still in the early stages of gauging the market. The Red Sox can’t afford to pigeonhole themselves, though, and thus they’re doing their homework in case things fall through with Salty.