Despite reports to the contrary, sources familiar with contract negotiations between the Boston Red Sox and David Ortiz say it appears "likely" the designated hitter will reach the open market, reports Rob Bradford of WEEI.com:
According to a source familiar with the negotiations, it currently appears "likely" David Ortiz and the Red Sox won't reach an agreement on a two-year deal before the designated hitter reaches the open market in two days.
It was reported last month that the Red Sox and Ortiz were closing in on a new contract that would keep the slugger in Boston for the next two seasons. Sides were reportedly finalizing the money involved, with Ortiz hoping to land an annual salary similar to the $14.575 million he received in 2012.
The Red Sox have until 12:01 am Saturday before other organizations are able to negotiate a new contract with Ortiz. Bradford’s sources indicate at this point it doesn’t appear a deal will be reached before the "window of exclusivity" expires.
Ortiz only played in 90 games for the Red Sox last season, but he continued to produce when he was able to step to the plate. Over 324 at-bats the 36-year-old hit .318/.415/.611 with 26 doubles and 23 home runs.