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Angels owner critical of Carl Crawford contract with Red Sox

12.17.10 at 4:28 pm ET
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Angels owner Arte Moreno, in an interview with the LA Times, suggested that the Angels never had the opportunity to make a formal offer to free agent outfielder Carl Crawford before he agreed on his seven-year, $142 million deal with the Red Sox. While baseball sources indicated that the Halos had offered six years at $106 million with a seventh-year vesting option that would have pushed the deal to $126 million (the 7/$126 million figure potentially matching what Jayson Werth received from the Nationals), Moreno disputed that account.

“There were rumors out there, but we never made an official offer, and no parameters were discussed,” Moreno told the Times, adding later that when Angels GM Tony Reagins met with Crawford’s agent on the first day of the winter meetings, he was told that the outfielder already had an agreement in place, and that the Angels “never had a chance” to bid.

The Angels owner emphasized that the deal that Crawford signed with the Red Sox came with significant risk.

“It’s crazy. I paid [$183 million] for the team [in 2003], and now we’re talking $142 million for one player? Seven years on a player is a huge risk financially,” Moreno said in the story. “[Crawford's] greatest asset is speed, and he’s a very skilled athlete who would have fit perfectly in left field for us. But we didn’t look at him as a power hitter in our stadium.”

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Report: Red Sox lose outfielder Jordan Parraz to Yankees

12.17.10 at 3:56 pm ET
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According to Jon Morosi of FoxSports.com (via twitter), the Red Sox lost outfielder Jordan Parraz to the Yankees via waivers. The Sox had claimed the 26-year-old off waivers from the Royals earlier this offseason.

As a 25-year-old in Kansas City’s system (Parraz turned 26 in Oct.), he hit .266/.350/.410/.760 with 11 homers and 61 RBI in 123 games for Triple-A Omaha. He played right field in 114 of his 123 games last year, serving as the designated hitter in the other contests. The 2004 third-round pick by the Houston Astros has hit .289 with an .814 OPS and 54 homers in seven minor league seasons.

The Sox currently have significant outfield depth, with Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury and J.D. Drew slated to start, and backup options including Mike Cameron, Ryan Kalish, Darnell McDonald, Josh Reddick and Daniel Nava on the 40-man roster.

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Source: Astros reach agreement with Bill Hall

12.17.10 at 3:13 pm ET
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A baseball source confirmed that the Astros have reached an agreement with free agent Bill Hall to be their regular second baseman. The news was first reported by Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com (via twitter), who said that the deal is for $3 million deal and includes a mutual option for the 2011 season.

Hall, who turns 31 later this month, spent this year as a utility man for the Sox, hitting .247/.316/.456/.772 with 18 homers and 46 RBI in 119 games. With his performance, Hall hoped to prove that he was ready to return to everyday duty as a free agent.

‘€œObviously, I do want to be an everyday player again,” he said during the season. “I feel like I’€™ve got a lot of baseball left in me. I’€™m not on my last legs. I’€™m just 30.”

His performance in Boston as a versatile player who appeared at every position except for catcher and first base led the baseball world to reach the same conclusion, resulting in his agreement to terms with the Astros.

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Red Sox still talking to Dan Wheeler, not engaged with Brian Fuentes

12.17.10 at 2:45 pm ET
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According to industry sources, the Red Sox continue to have conversations with right-hander Dan Wheeler about a potential deal to bring the Rhode Island native to Boston, but the team is not focused on left-hander Brian Fuentes.

Wheeler, 33, who was drafted out of Pilgrim High School in Warwick (R.I.), has been with the Tampa Bay Rays since the middle of the 2007 season, when he was acquired from the Astros in a trade for Ty Wigginton. Wheeler had a 3.35 ERA in 48 1/3 innings in 2010, and he struck out 8.6 batters per nine innings. However, his innings total was the lowest of his professional career, and he has seen his workload go down in each of the last three years. Over his last three full seasons with the Rays, he has a 3.24 ERA while striking out 7.5 batters per nine innings, while walking 2.5 batters per nine.

Fuentes was seen as a likely subject of Red Sox interest this offseason, coming off a year when he had a 2.81 ERA and 8.8 strikeouts per nine innings for the Angels and Twins. Over the last three years, most of which he spent as a closer, Fuentes had a 3.15 ERA and 9.5 punchouts per nine innings.

He missed time twice during the 2010 season due to back woes, resulting in his lowest innings tally since 2004. Still, he was very sharp down the stretch, tossing 9 2/3 innings for the Twins without allowing an earned run. He held opponents to a .181 average and .607 OPS in 2010, and dominated lefties to the tune of a .128 average and .371 OPS.

But, after the Sox’ reported two-year deal with Bobby Jenks, the team’s appetite for multi-year deals for middle relievers may have been exhausted, despite an AOL FanHouse report that the Sox and Yankees are engaged in a fight for the left-hander’s services.

Read More: brian fuentes, dan wheeler, Hot Stove,

Red Sox spring training tickets on sale Jan. 8

12.17.10 at 11:47 am ET
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The Red Sox announced that they will put spring training tickets on sale on Sat., Jan. 8, at the City of Palms Park box office, on the team website and by phone at 888-REDSOX6. Handicap accessible seating is also available by calling 877-REDSOX9. Hearing impaired patrons may call the TTY line at 617-226-6644.

Those in Fort Myers can take part in a number of events at City of Palms Park from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Six pitchers sign minor league deals with Red Sox

12.16.10 at 7:18 pm ET
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In addition to their decision to re-sign lefty Andrew Miller to a minor league deal, the Red Sox announced the signings Thursday of five other free agents to 2011 minor league contracts, a group that includes former Sox reliever Lenny DiNardo ‘€” a deal that was reported by WEEI.com on Wednesday.

In addition to Miller and DiNardo, Boston inked southpaws Rich Hill and Randy Williams, as well as right-handed pitchers Clevelan Santeliz and Ryan Harvey. Hill, Miller, Williams and Santeliz have also been invited to Boston’€™s major league spring training camp as non-roster players.  All of the free agents have been placed on the Triple-A Pawtucket roster.

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Red Sox re-sign Andrew Miller, sign Matt Albers, trade Eric Patterson

12.16.10 at 5:23 pm ET
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The Red Sox took two steps toward shoring up their bullpen Thursday, while also completing the trade for first baseman Adrian Gonzalez.

According to a major league source, the Sox have re-signed lefty Andrew Miller, whom they originally acquired from the Marlins in exchange for Dustin Richardson. Miller was non-tendered by the Red Sox in Nov., allowing the 25-year-old to become a free agent. He is expected to compete for a spot in the Red Sox’ bullpen.

The Red Sox also made the signing of reliever Matt Albers official, announcing they have inked the 27-year-old to a one-year deal. Alberts, a righty, went 5-3 with a 4.52 ERA in a career-high 62 appearances with the Orioles in 2010. Albers tossed more than one inning on 25 occasions  in ’10, tops among American League relievers.

Another move made by the Sox was trading utilityman Eric Patterson to the Padres to complete the Dec. 6 deal for Gonzalez. Patterson had been acquired by the Red Sox on June 26 of last season from the A’s, going on to hit .226 with two homers in 45 games. Between Oakland and Boston, Patterson established career highs in games played (90), at-bats (187), runs (26), hits (40), doubles (8), triples (5), home runs (6), RBI (16), and stolen bases (11) over the course of the ’10 season.

The team also re-signed Rich Hill, who pitched six innings for the team last season.

Additionally,they announced the signing of lefty reliever Randy Williams, who pitched 27 innings with a 5.40 ERA for the and White Sox last season, and right-handers Clevelan Santeliz and Ryan Harvey.

Harvey was the sixth overall pick by the Cubs in the 2003 draft. The team drafted him as an outfielder, but he never made it past Double-A.

For more Red Sox news, see the team page at weei.com/redsox.

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