The Seattle Mariners may be about to lose out on one of the top right-handed hitters on the free agent market this winter. While speculation has been running rampant for weeks about a possible trade for Justin Upton, it appears that Hanley Ramirez may be close to signing with the Boston Red Sox.
According to Alex Speier of WEEI, the Red Sox and Ramirez are in advanced conversations. And while a deal is not yet imminent, the talks appear to be progressing quickly.
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What is also not known at this point is whether the Red Sox are engaging in talks in case their offer to Pablo Sandoval is rejected, or if their plan is to indeed try to sign both, putting Hanley in left field and Pablo at third.
All that is clear at this point is that earlier reports about the Mariners preferring to sign Nelson Cruz over Hanley Ramirez may be about to be confirmed, as it appears that the Mariners are nowhere near the kind of advanced talks that the Sox are engaged in.
But also for Mariners fans, the idea of another free agent target coming off the board to a team other than Seattle – after losing out on Billy Butler, Victor Martinez and Russell Martin – is a tough pill to swallow who may be running out of options, other than trading Taijuan Walker.
But things can change virtually overnight, and sometimes twice. So stay tuned.