Red Sox Sign Marco Scutaro to Fill Hole at Shortstop


December 4, 2009

Red Sox Sign Marco Scutaro to Fill Hole at Shortstop And the Red Sox will experiment with yet another shortstop in 2010.

Marco Scutaro has signed a two-year deal with the Red Sox, becoming the latest answer at shortstop — a position that's been tough to consistently fill since Nomar Garciaparra was shipped out of town in 2004.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed by the club, but a source told NESN that Scutaro's deal is for two years at $5 million per season with a mutual option for a third year. The Red Sox hold a $6 million team option for the 2012 campaign, while Scutaro can exercise a $3 million player option should he wish to remain in Boston. The deal also includes a $1 million signing bonus and $1.5 million buyout for the mutual option.

The story was first reported Thursday night by out of Venezuela.

Boston received a first-round pick after Billy Wagner signed with Atlanta on Wednesday, and they will now give up their original first-round pick as compensation to Toronto.

The 34-year-old Scutaro was used primarily as a shortstop last season, despite playing second base and outfield at other points in his eight-year career. Prior to being traded to Toronto before the 2008 season, Scutaro spent four years with Oakland and two with the Mets.

The 2009 season was the best of his career, as he hit .282 with 12 homers, 60 RBIs, 100 runs scored and 35 doubles, all career highs.

It is expected, especially following his career year, that Scutaro will replace Alex Gonzalez at shortstop in Boston's starting lineup. Gonzalez, ironically, signed with the Blue Jays on Nov. 26.

The only other option for the Red Sox at shortstop, Jed Lowrie, told NESN's Heidi Watney that Scutaro is "a great player." Lowrie said that he's working out in Toronto and plans to compete for the starting job.

Earlier on Thursday, it was reported that the Red Sox were doing their due diligence to ensure Scutaro's health, following the season-ending heel injury he suffered in September.

Scutaro told the Spanish-language Web site that the Red Sox had requested his medical records to see how the torn plantar fascia in his right heel has healed. also reported that Scutaro worked out for the Red Sox near his home in Miami earlier in the week. Allard Baird, a special assistant to GM Theo Epstein, was in attendance, and it's "believed the workout helped alleviate some concerns the Red Sox had."

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