From trade rumors to free-agent signings, which rumors are fact and which ones are fiction? This may be hard to predict, but each slide is about one player who has been mentioned in recent rumors involving the Red Sox.
The Red Sox are looking at other options to play right field in 2013, including Nick Swisher and Shane Victorino—who are both mentioned later in this slide show.
The Braves showed interest earlier in the offseason, so the Red Sox may have to earn Ross back with some incentives in a new contract offer to show him that they definitely want him back in right field at Fenway Park.
The Red Sox met with the New York Mets about R.A. Dickey, but the Mets are looking for two of the top prospects in the Red Sox farm system, according to ESPN's Joe McDonald.
The Red Sox met with Mets to talk about possible trade for R.A. Dickey, according to a baseball source. Mets want Bogaerts and Bradley, Jr.— Joe McDonald (@ESPNJoeyMac) December 3, 2012
The Mets apparently want both Xavier Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr., and I don't see the Red Sox parting with both of those soon-to-be everyday players in MLB.
Also, the Toronto Blue Jays are again in on the mix, and the Mets are looking to acquire catcher J.P. Arencibia, according to baseball analyst Jim Duquette. The Blue Jays are looking to make room for their catching prospect, Travis d'Arnaud.
Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports isn't even fully clear about who is in on the Shane Victorino sweepstakes.
The Red Sox may be in on him if Jacoby Ellsbury is out of the picture, but that means trading the young speedster before the "Flying Hawaiian" signs.
Victorino is said to be looking for a deal worth $30 million over three years, according to Scott Lauber from The Boston Herald, and the Red Sox would rather put that money to better use in 2013.
Josh Hamilton is the top position player on the free-agent market, and the Red Sox are still in the mix to earn the right to sign the polarizing Texas All-Star.
According to ESPN's Jim Bowden, the Red Sox are one of several teams still in on Hamilton.
Rangers, Red Sox and Yankees all should be considered realistic landing spots for Josh Hamilton— JIM BOWDEN (@JimBowdenESPNxm) December 3, 2012
Also, baseball sources are quickly realizing that the Red Sox should not be ruled out, based on the amount of money they have to spend, according to Gordon Edes of ESPN.
Baseball source advises not to rule out the Red Sox on Hamilton: "They're the Boston Red Sox, and they have money.''— Gordon Edes (@GordonEdes) December 3, 2012
This could be the Red Sox just pushing up the price for Hamilton, but maybe the Red Sox can negotiate with the outfielder on a contract only three or four years long.
Justin Masterson was traded to the Cleveland Indians for Catcher Victor Martinez, and the Red Sox are now looking to get him back.
He is right now the ace of the Indians staff, but it may take a lot to get the young pitcher, according to Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal.
What this means is the Red Sox put together some packages to see what they needed to do to get Masterson back, and if it costs too many top prospects in the Red Sox farm system, then the Red Sox won't try too hard to make a deal with the Indians.
But this could all change midseason if the Indians are way out of the playoff picture and the Red Sox need a pitcher.