After seven long weeks, J.D. Drew will officially become the Red Sox' right fielder and number 5 hitter when the Red Sox hold a conference call to announce the terms of his deal today.
The sticking points to the five-year, $70 million deal was the language of the contract should Drew's surgically repaired shoulder from 2005 force him on to the DL in the third year of the contract. Then the Sox can void the final two years and make Drew a free agent. If it happens in the fourth year, they can void the final year of the deal.
The first two years of the deal is a standard guaranteed contract.
I know that most Red Sox fans were wary of this deal, especially since no other team seemed to be bidding for Drew's services. His injury-plagued past, plus what appears to be his pacificity on the field put many people off going after him. But I liked the idea of bringing him in, especially if the Red Sox didn't trade Manny Ramirez (and they still haven't). Drew's a terrific outfielder and a good fit in a 3-4-5 lineup with Manny and David Ortiz.
I think for the benefit of everyone involved, Drew better get off to a good start to the 2007 season.