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Padres interested in Pablo Sandoval, who will visit Red Sox

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The third baseman is now drawing interest from San Diego.

Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

The Padres have expressed interest in free-agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval, as first reported by Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. San Diego joins the Giants, Red Sox, White Sox and Blue Jays as the teams in the mix for Sandoval, who is expected to command a five- or six-year deal on the open market.

San Diego was not thought to be a team looking to sign Sandoval, but theoretically could move Yangervis Solarte elsewhere if they found a way to sign Panda. The team is not usually a major player in free agency, but could move salary by trading starting pitchers or catchers in the upcoming weeks.

Sandoval will visit the Red Sox in Boston at some point "in the next week", according to major-league sources, but a date has not yet been set. Boston has been aggressive in their pursuit of Sandoval and is seen as the greatest competition for the Giants, who are working to re-sign their three-time World Series champion as well. At this point, the White Sox and Blue Jays have seemed to back off after meeting with Sandoval's representatives at the GM meetings in Phoenix.