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The Boston Red Sox are one of the best-run teams in all of baseball, and playing in the AL East certainly requires them to make smart moves.
In this offseason, however, they can make both smart and splashy moves.
Last season, the Red Sox were, as usual, a solid offensive team. They ranked second in baseball in runs scored (818) and second in slugging percentage (.451). However, injuries kept the Red Sox from keeping pace with the Rays and Yankees in the AL East, eventually finishing 89-73.
Having already lost both Victor Martinez and Adrian Beltre to free agency, the Red Sox are in need of some offense, big time.
Martinez has already signed with the Detroit Tigers, and the Red Sox hope to be able to re-sign Beltre. But even if they are able to re-sign Beltre, they'll need more help than that.
Biggest Target(s): Jayson Werth, Carl Crawford
With the Winter Meetings set to begin Monday, the Red Sox are hot on the trail of both outfielders. They have already met with both Werth and Crawford and their respective agents.
Crawford may very well command a contract in the range of seven years, $100 million-plus. The Red Sox have never signed a free agent to a contract longer than five years (John Lackey: five years, $82.5 million). Will they be willing to go that far with Crawford, whom manager Terry Francona called a "game-changer?"
Werth is considered the second-best free agent outfielder available, behind Crawford. Werth, a Scott Boras guy, may have a similar price tag as far as money is concerned, but he is two years older than Crawford, so the Red Sox won't have to committ to as many years as with Crawford.
Werth may be the better choice for the Red Sox though, as they will look to add a right-handed power bat to replace Adrian Beltre.