Red Sox remain in mix for Martin: report
With 2 catchers on board, Boston is unsure of adding Canadian backstop
The Boston Red Sox appear undecided in their pursuit of Russell Martin, perhaps not wanting to risk a logjam at the catcher position.
The Toronto native is drawing plenty of interest at this week's baseball winter meetings in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., with several teams reportedly keeping an eye on his status.
Boston's dilemma probably has something to do with the fact it has two catchers on board in veteran Jason Varitek and Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
According to ESPN, teams are making offers to Martin's agent, Matt Colleran.
The Blue Jays and New York Yankees have also been linked to Martin, who became a free agent on Friday when the Los Angeles Dodgers failed to meet a league-wide deadline to sign players under their control for 2011.
New York reportedly was closed to acquiring Martin a week ago for fellow catcher Francisco Cervelli, with the Yankees and Dodgers apparently exchanging medical records.
Seeks $5.5M US
A source told Yahoo that the 27-year-old is seeking a guaranteed $5.5 million US next season, a raise of 10 per cent from his 2010 stipend of $5.05 million.
The Dodgers' final offer is believed to have been $4.2 million guaranteed, with incentives worth between $1.5 million and $1.7 million if Martin appeared in 125 games.
It seems a good offer for someone coming off a small fracture in his right hip that isn't able to run yet, let alone begin baseball activities.
An all-star in 2007 and 2008, Martin posted a batting average of .248 in 2010, down from .250 the previous season and .280 in 2008. He hit a career-best 19 home runs in 2007, but swatted 13, seven and five the next three years.
In 2007, Martin also went from a career high of 87 runs batted in to a low of 26 in 97 contests in 2010. Teams can sign him at any price at or above the major-league minimum of $400,000.