On Thursday, three former Red Sox players, including two from the 2004 World Series champions (pictured left), found new homes. Keith Foulke signed a one-year deal with the Cleveland Indians, Mark Loretta signed with the Houston Astros, and Doug Mientkiewicz agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the New York Yankees.
Foulke's deal is for $5 million and one year with an option. He may very well become a closer again, and the Indians will give him that opportunity. He has to prove to the Indians he's completely healthy from the injury woes that ruined his last two seasons.
Loretta's deal is also for one year, at $2.5 million, and some incentives could bring it to $3.5 million.
Mientkiewicz signed for $1.5 million, and figures to split time in New York at 1B with Andy Phillips. He's a fabulous first baseman, but he doesn't have a particularly good stick, and he's coming off back surgery from last summer. He's a no-brainer pick up for the Yankees, but he has to prove he's healthy as well.
I saw a terrific line at the Royal Rooters Message Board that I thought I'd share with you about yet another Red Sox player signing on with New York.
"At least he won't be stealing any more World Series balls."
The Red Sox meanwhile signed former Seattle pitcher Joel Pineiro to a one-year, $4 million deal. Pineiro hasn't put up good numbers the past three seasons as a starter, but I think he's worth taking a shot at. He can spot start, but he will be used mainly out of the bullpen. There are rumors the Red Sox may give him a shot to win the closer job in spring training if the Sox don't swing a deal for an established closer this winter. He could also win a job as a set-up man. It will be interesting to see if the change of scenery does him any good.