Mike Napoli and the Red Sox will finally touch pen to paper on a new contract soon, sources told ESPN Boston on Thursday. Napoli and the Sox have reportedly agreed on a one-year, $5 million contract with incentives that could reward Napoli with a $13 million payout in 2013.
This news comes nearly two months after it was initially reported that the Red Sox had signed the free agent catcher/first baseman to a three-year, $39 million deal. That agreement reportedly hit a snag when Sox physicians became concerned about a hip condition that has never publicly surfaced in Napoli’s seven seasons in the majors.
Seems like a pretty smart restructure for the Red Sox, as the one-year deal secures an everyday, power hitting first baseman but also protects the club from a long-term commitment with a player they’re obviously not convinced can stay healthy for multiple seasons.
Red Sox GM Ben Cherington has yet to confirm the deal with Napoli but said he’d have something to announce “hopefully soon, but it won’t be in the next couple of days.”