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Bay breaks silence regarding Red Sox negotiations

01.21.10 at 8:45 pm ET

Speaking at length for the first time about what happened in his negotiations with the Red Sox, Jason Bay explained that a huge hurdle was a disagreement between the Red Sox and Bay regarding the health of his knees and right shoulder.

Bay confirmed the report by Peter Gammons that he had agreed to a four-year, $60 million deal with the Red Sox in July, but that it had been retracted by the Sox after the team deemed that there too many concerns with the results of his physical. ‘€œThat,’€ the outfielder said, ‘€œis just one-tenth of the story.’€

According to Bay, the Red Sox came back with an offer of two guaranteed years, with two more years that were contingent on Bay’s health and productivity (all at $15 million per season). That deal also would have included the agreement that Bay have knee surgery following the 2009 season.

Bay and his agent, Joe Urbon, would seek out an independent physician in late August for a second opinion. That doctor deemed Bay in much better health than the Red Sox’ medical team had determined. In November, the two sides sent the MRI taken in July to an agreed-upon physician, who also reported that Bay’s health shouldn’t be a concern. The final Red Sox offer to Bay, which was delivered on the first night of the Winter Meetings, was for three guaranteed years with one year contingent on Bay’s health and productivity (also at $15 million per season), without the request to have any offseason surgery.

For the complete story of Bay’s negotiations with the Red Sox click here.

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