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Pablo Sandoval Rumors: Latest Buzz and Speculation Surrounding Star 3B

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistOctober 30, 2014

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Updates from Monday, Nov. 24

Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports Pablo Sandoval has an agreement to join the Boston Red Sox for five years for close to $100 million. ESPN sources confirmed the report.

Sandoval's agent eventually confirmed the deal in Boston, via Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Sandoval’s agent, Gustavo Vasquez, finally acknowledging that deal with #RedSox is done. Pending physical. Press conference tomorrow.

Updates from Sunday, Nov. 23

Jim Duquette of MLB Network and Jim Bowden of ESPN provide a synopsis of the Giants' Bobby Evans discussing negotiations with Pablo Sandoval:

Jim Duquette @Jim_Duquette

Evans just told us " we have not made a final offer" on Sandoval

Jim Bowden @JimBowdenGM

Bobby Evans would not confirm that their offer on the table is 5yrs $95m but implied it’s accurate #FrontOffice Sirius 209 XM 89

Updates from Saturday, Nov. 22

Rosenthal has an update on Sandoval's discussions:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

#RedSox indeed may be in lead for Sandoval, as @nickcafardo reported. But market can shift quickly. Happened to #Cubs with Martin.

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Sandoval’s agents have not communicated to #SFGiants that they trail #RedSox in bidding. SF has been in contact with Sandoval’s side today.

Heyman reports the Padres' interest has gotten more serious:

The Padres, a surprise big player this winter, made what was termed a "very serious" offer for star free-agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval, and new Padres GM A.J. Preller is believed to have hand-delivered that Sandoval bid en route to the Dominican Republic, where he continued his spirited dual pursuit of Cuban slugger Yasmany Tomas.

The Padres' offer to Sandoval kept them in a three-way high-stakes game with the big-market Red Sox and incumbent World champion Giants, though most folks still see them as in deep in that competition with two high-revenue teams, including the likely favorite, San Francisco, where Sandoval already has won three World Series rings.

Despite that offer, John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle reported on Sandoval's thinking: "I hear Pablo Sandoval has received his highest contract offer from the Padres but is leaning toward accepting an offer from the Red Sox, though events could change in a hurry."

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - OCTOBER 31: San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval acknowledges the crowd in front of Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi during the San Francisco Giants World Series victory parade on October 31, 2014 in San Francisco, California. T
Jason O. Watson/Getty Images

Rosenthal later talked to Sandoval's agent about the report:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Spoke with Sandoval’s agent, Gustavo Vasquez. Said that Sandoval has offers from #RedSox, #SFGiants, #Padres and will decide next week.

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

I asked Vasquez about @JohnSheaHey report that #Padres have high bid for Sandoval. He declined to say, but said offers all were “close.”

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Possible that Sandoval could pick the team he wants, ask them to reach a number and close the deal that way with any of three bidders.

Updates from Friday, Nov. 21

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe provides details on Sandoval and the Red Sox:

A major league source indicated the Red Sox’s five-year, $95 million offer may be in the lead over Sandoval's San Francisco Giants and the San Diego Padres.

It's not certain whether any of the teams have offered a sixth-year option.

Sandoval, however, would like a decision soon. He visited the Red Sox on Monday and Tuesday and came away with an offer.

Rosenthal reports on Sandoval and the Padres:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Source: #Padres making offer to Sandoval today.

Updates from Thursday, Nov. 20

Cafardo has the latest on Sandoval:

Nick Cafardo @nickcafardo

Among Red Sox, Giants and Padres - little separation on money being offered to Sandoval - in that 5-year, $90-95m range. Jays wavering..

Updates from Wednesday, Nov. 19

An American League East team aside from the Red Sox is in the running for Sandoval, according to Rosenthal:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Source: #BlueJays “in the mix” for Sandoval, as first reported by @nickcafardo. See my earlier tweets, which outlined obstacles Jays face.

Rosenthal also had an update on Sandoval's talks with the Red Sox:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Reported earlier that Sandoval’s side will speak by phone with #SFGiants today. No offer from #RedSox yet; Sandoval awaiting BOS proposal.

Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com reported on Boston's offer to Sandoval:

According to a major league source, the Red Sox are set to formulate a contract offer for Sandoval, who remains their highest priority among free agents. ...

... According to some who've spoken to the Red Sox in recent days, the club believes Sandoval's interest in them is genuine and not merely a tactic to gain leverage with his former team, the San Francisco Giants.

Updates from Tuesday, Nov. 18

Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reported on negotiations surrounding Sandoval:

Jerry Crasnick @jcrasnick

Hearing Pablo Sandoval has discussed deals in the 5-year, $80-90 million range with #sfgiants and #redsox.

Jerry Crasnick @jcrasnick

Indications are things could come together quickly with Sandoval and the #redsox are a very serious player.

Updates from Monday, Nov. 17

Cafardo reported on Sandoval's plans to meet with the Red Sox:

Nick Cafardo @nickcafardo

The Red Sox will meet with Pablo Sandoval all day Tuesday at Fenway. There's a dinner either tonight or Tuesday night as well.

Updates from Sunday, Nov. 16

KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 29:  Buster Posey #28 , Madison Bumgarner #40, Pablo Sandoval #48 and the San Francisco Giants celebrate after defeating the Kansas City Royals to win Game Seven of the 2014 World Series by a score of 3-2 at Kauffman Stadium on O
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Cafardo noted when Sandoval will meet with Boston:

When Pablo Sandoval arrives in Boston on Monday night, he’ll be taken out to dinner by Red Sox brass. No dessert, Pablo. The Sox will begin seriously recruiting Sandoval on Tuesday. It’s expected the Sox would want to be creative with the contract, offering bonuses for Sandoval to stay within a certain weight range. ...

... Under the collective bargaining agreement, teams are not allowed to put clauses in contracts that take money away for gaining weight. No one has made Sandoval an offer yet, and the Giants will wait until he has met with other teams. The White Sox and Blue Jays also have shown interest, but they’re not expected to compete with Boston or San Francisco.

Heyman adds another team to the list of suitors:

Jon Heyman @JonHeyman

#padres are 5th team in panda derby; he's expected to visit boston this week. http://t.co/bWd0R3ujCX

Updates from Wednesday, Nov. 12

Rosenthal has an update on the market for Sandoval:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Sandoval market appears down to #SFGiants, #RedSox. #WhiteSox interest seems limited, #BlueJays same. And Red Sox weighing other options.

John Tomase of the Boston Herald has this on the Red Sox's talks with Sandoval:

General manager Ben Cherington yesterday said the team sat down on Monday with the agent for free-agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval, a three-time World Series champion with the Giants who would help solve problems at the hot corner and against right-handed pitching.

Cherington wouldn't disclose details of the meeting with agent Gustavo Vasquez, other than to term it "constructive."

"We've met with several (agents), including him, and had good constructive conversations with a lot of guys already," Cherington said. "All those conversations will continue. I don’t expect anything to happen this week, or maybe in the near term. This may play out. I expect many conversations to continue over the next few weeks."

Cafardo reports on when Boston will visit with Sandoval again:

Nick Cafardo @nickcafardo

Pablo Sandoval will visit Boston early next week.

Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish reveals more teams that are reportedly not in the mix to obtain Sandoval's services: 

Chris Cotillo @ChrisCotillo

Sources: #Marlins and #Yankees have not expressed any interest in Sandoval to this point. Were rumored as potential fits in Sept/Oct.

Updates from Tuesday, Nov. 11

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - OCTOBER 31: Pablo Sandoval #48 of the San Francisco Giants, waves to the crowd along the parade route during the San Francisco Giants World Series victory parade on October 31, 2014 in San Francisco, California. The San Francisco Giant
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes has the latest on Boston's pursuit of Sandoval:

While there have been reports, most notably from Buster Olney of ESPN.com, that the San Francisco Giants are optimistic about re-signing Pablo Sandoval and that a deal could happen soon, an executive with another major league club said Tuesday that the Red Sox are "all in" on the free-agent third baseman and are making a big push to sign him.

"He's more of an American League player," said the executive, an allusion to the fact that Sandoval, who has remained nimble afield despite carrying considerable weight, might ultimately slow down defensively. "And he can really hit."

Updates from Monday, Nov. 10

Cafardo reported on Boston's talks with Sandoval's agent:

Nick Cafardo @nickcafardo

Pablo Sandoval agent Gus Vasquez meeting with Ben Cherington this afternoon in Phoenix.

Updates from Sunday, Nov. 9

Rosenthal noted Sandoval's meetings with teams:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Sandoval's agent, Gustavo Vasquez, plans to meet with #BlueJays, #SFGiants, #RedSox, #WhiteSox in Phoenix.

Updates from Friday, Nov. 7

Cafardo has an update on one of Sandoval's potential suitors:

The Red Sox have already made contact with Pablo Sandoval's representatives, and a face-to-face meeting will take place between the parties at the general managers meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona, next week, according to a major league source.

Updates from Thursday, Nov. 6

Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle provides details on the deal Sandoval is seeking:

Henry Schulman @hankschulman

Talked to Sandoval’s agent, Gustavo Vasquez. Sandoval wants at least 6 years. At 28, length of deal more important than last $. #SFGiants

Henry Schulman @hankschulman

Vasquez said he’s talked to “a few teams” interested in Sandoval. Plans to meet with them at GM meetings next week. #SFGiants

Updates from Tuesday, Nov. 4

Rosenthal has an update on Sandoval's negotiations with the Giants:

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

No surprise: Sandoval has rejected qualifying offer from #SFGiants.

Updates from Monday, Nov. 3

KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 29:  Pablo Sandoval #48 of the San Francisco Giants reacts against the Kansas City Royals during Game Seven of the 2014 World Series at Kauffman Stadium on October 29, 2014 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Ima
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Rosenthal provides a statement from Sandoval's agent, Gustavo Vasquez, discussing the star's stance heading toward free agency:

At the beginning of the season, Pablo decided to stop negotiating on a new contract so he could focus on his team and help his teammates win another World Series.

He took the risk of stopping the negotiation and possibly securing a new contract for himself and his family and decided to place his team in front of everything. As he has displayed throughout his career, team success is Pablo's driving force.

This season, he has once again proven himself to be a leader on and off the field and has shown everyone what he is made of. He is a committed and disciplined player, and he would like to be valued as such as a free agent.

Rosenthal also reports at least three teams interested in Sandoval's services should he hit the market:

The Red Sox, Marlins and White Sox are among the teams with possible interest in Sandoval as a free agent. But the Giants remain the favorites to keep him, due to their long history of re-signing players who help them win championships.

Schulman reported on negotiations between the Giants and Sandoval:

Henry Schulman @hankschulman

As of a half hour ago, #sfgiants and Sandoval's side were not engaged in any last-minute talks. Starting tomorrow he can sign anywhere.

Henry Schulman @hankschulman

The #sfgiants will give a qualifying offer to Sandoval by today's 2 pm PDT deadline.

Updates from Friday, Oct. 31 

The Associated Press provides comments from Sandoval, who spoke about his contract status on the day of the Giants' third World Series victory parade in five years, (via ESPN):

I want to wear that jersey for the rest of my career. I'm going to go from what my heart tells me. ... I'd love to be back here, I love the fans, I love my teammates. They taught me a lot of things, to respect the game and play the game right.

Giants CEO Larry Baer also weighed in on the looming contract status:

Re-signing the Kung Fu Panda is a top priority for the franchise going forward, tooCEO Larry Baer said, "Pablo's a huge part of the family"but it could take months to strike a deal.

"We're going to do anything possible to keep it together the best we can," Baer said. "Literally, when that last shot of confetti goes out, we're going to be hunkered down after today. I think the fans believe we have a good track record along those lines. We've stayed pretty consistent in the approach."

Original Text

On the heels of another spectacular performance in the World Series, third baseman Pablo Sandoval is in position to land a huge contract in free agency.

While remaining with a San Francisco Giants team that has won three titles in the past five years is certainly possible, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports the Boston Red Sox plan on making a run at the Kung Fu Panda.

KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 29: Pablo Sandoval #48 of the San Francisco Giants reacts against the Kansas City Royals during Game Seven of the 2014 World Series at Kauffman Stadium on October 29, 2014 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Chase Headley and Aramis Ramirez are also potential options for Boston at third base, per Heyman, but there is no doubt that Sandoval has the highest profile among them.

Not only is the Venezuelan star already a three-time champion at just 28 years of age, but he also enjoyed an all-time great playoff run this season by registering the most hits in a single postseason, according to ESPN Stats & Info:

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

Pablo Sandoval's 26 hits this postseason are the most by a hitter in a single postseason

Sandoval is a two-time All-Star, and he enjoyed a strong regular season in 2014 as well with a .279 batting average, 16 home runs and 73 RBI. With that said, he simply has a penchant for elevating his play when the games matter most.

As pointed out by Jon Morosi of Fox Sports 1, Sandoval is willing and able to contribute in any area in order to win:

Jon Morosi @jonmorosi

As Pablo Sandoval nears free agency, World Series has been a showcase that he does little things well, too: defense and baserunning.

Sandoval has been a key player for San Francisco since bursting onto the scene as a 21-year-old in 2008. He has never played for another team in his MLB career, and Ira Kaufman of The Tampa Tribune believes he may have forced the Giants' hand in terms of offering a big contract:

Ira Kaufman @IKaufman76

Pablo Sandoval making it hard on Giants management to deny him a lucrative contract in the offseason. He would be a prized free agent

One person who would love to see Sandoval back in the fold is Giants manager Bruce Bochy, according to Daniel Brown of the San Jose Mercury News"As far as what happens, I don't know. It's obvious I love this kid. Hopefully something gets done, but these are things that take care of themselves in the winter."

If the Giants aren't willing to commit to Sandoval over the long term, there is no doubt that another team will happily swoop in and sign him.

Perhaps the Red Sox will be that team if they are as intrigued as Heyman suggests, but Sandoval figures to have plenty of options to choose from regardless.

Follow @MikeChiari on Twitter.

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