The Pablo Sandoval sweepstakes just welcomed a surprise entrant.

The San Diego Padres have joined the Boston Red Sox and San Francisco Giants in aggressively pursuing Sandoval,’s Jon Heyman reported Thursday night. The Toronto Blue Jays and Chicago White Sox reportedly have shown interest, too, but the Padres, Red Sox and Giants are seen as the most aggressive pursuers.

The Sandoval situation seemingly changes by the minute. But while there are conflicting reports about whether Sandoval has received any formal contract offers in free agency, The Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo tweeted Thursday night that there’s little separation between the Padres, Red Sox and Giants in terms of money being offered.

Cafardo suggested Sandoval could land a contract in the five-year, $90 to $95 million range. Cafardo also added that the Blue Jays, who already signed catcher Russell Martin to a five-year, $82 million contract this offseason, are wavering in their pursuit of Sandoval.

Sandoval is considered the best third baseman available on the open market. He’s coming off a season in which he hit .279 with 16 homers, 73 RBIs and a .739 OPS before then adding to his already impressive postseason resume by hitting .366 (26-for-71) with an .888 OPS in the playoffs. The 28-year-old has won three World Series titles over the last five years with San Francisco.

There have been a lot of twists and turns in the Sandoval saga this offseason. But it’s possible the situation could be nearing its conclusion, as Heyman wrote Thursday that some involved in talks believe a deal could be struck with a team before Thanksgiving.

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