It's no secret that the Red Sox, among a handful of other teams, are very interested in obtaining shortstop Marco Scutaro — but this week, members of Boston's brass have reportedly taken their interest to the next level and have contacted the 34-year-old, according to Venezuelan reporter Augusto Cardenas of Diario Panorama.
But the news gets better.
Scutaro told Cardenas that he prefers the Red Sox and the Dodgers
because of their success and higher possibility of reaching the playoffs.
"There are two teams that would be of interest to me — the Dodgers and Boston," he told Diario Panorma, a newspaper from his native Venezuela, in Spanish. "It would have to [be] teams with the possibility of being in the playoffs. The Dodgers want me to play second base. Boston would be shortstop. And there are other teams that have called about playing third. Although I have not closed any doors, I would rather be between short and second."
In the report, Scutaro said that Boston, Texas, Seattle and the Los Angeles Dodgers have all approached him, but have yet to make an offer. Deals are expected to come pouring in come Tuesday, Dec. 1. which is the deadline for Toronto to offer him arbitration.
The Jays are able and ready to watch Scutaro walk as their shortstop position is already filled, thanks to the signing of both Alex Gonzalez and John McDonald to deals earlier this week. Toronto will be far from empty-handed if and when Scutaro flies the coop as the Jays will be granted two compensatory picks in the 2010 first-year player draft because Scutaro is a Type A free agent.
In order for the Blue Jays to receive the picks, they club must offer arbitration to Scutaro, who is expected to decline for a two- or three-year deal elsewhere.
While the Mariners and Rangers both want Scutaro to play third base, the Dodgers are seeking him for second. The Red Sox currently have Jed Lowrie as their starting shortstop and are desperate for a veteran shortstop after the 2009 AL wild card winners watched Gonzalez sign with the Jays.
The eight-year veteran Scutaro had an OPS of .789 and hit .282 and set a career-high in homers with 12 and tied a career-high in RBIs with 60. Scutaro made all 143 starts at shortstop this past summer after splitting time evenly between second, third and short in 2008. In 840 career games, the utlity man has played 415 at short, 306 at second and 98 at third and he has even seen time at outfield and first base.