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A newly acquired Red Sox player usually comes to Boston for a physical and officially signs the contract. Then, the player is introduced at a Fenway Park press conference.
It seems like for days now the Red Sox have been on the verge of an announcement that Mike Napoli has been signed to a three-year, $39 million deal, but none has come.
The delay has given rise to speculation that there's a hang-up or snag which FoxSports.com speculated on Tuesday night.
No Red Sox official, or Napoli himself, has returned text messages on the subject.
It was confirmed that Napoli did come in for a physical so perhaps it's just a matter of a doctor clearing the deal. Is there something they need to double-check? Napoli suffered from a quad injury last season. He's also had shoulder surgery in the past.
Globe: Napoli deal slow to complete
All signs are pointing to the Sox being concerned with one of the few injuries that Napoli has had over the years. It's not surprising considering how most of the time they are overly concerned with protecting themselves from injuries. It's why they have John Lackey signed for the veteran minimum for 2015 and why Jason Bay didn't have a longer tenure in Boston. The only time they didn't seem to worried was when they brought in Adrian Gonzalez, who was fresh off of shoulder surgery.
Does this mean they'll try and re-negotiate with Napoli? It's unlikely since the Sox are desperate to have at first. It could mean they have to get a quality backup at first as a plan B. It could also explain why the Sox are still interesting in Nick Swisher, who has some experience at first.
It's not panic time yet. If this continues for the next couple of weeks then we can start getting concerned, but this is all just the Sox front office doing their due diligence.
Globe: Youkilis, Yankees agree to deal | Herald: Catch to Napoli signing? | CSNNE: Sox still interested in Swisher? | Youk heads to the Yankees | WEEI: Trade Jacoby | Sox still interested in Swisher | Yankees agree to deal with Youk