The Red Sox continued to make noise yesterday, which makes their silence all the more curious. And when it comes to outfielder J.D. Drew, the Red Sox are saying decidedly little.
There appears to have been a problem with the player's physical exam.
While Sox officials and Drew's agent, Scott Boras, have been playing word games, indications are that Drew's recent physical with the team has raised a red flag. For example, the Sox still have not announced Drew's signing despite the fact that nearly two weeks have passed since Boras stood in a Florida hotel lobby and announced that the team and his client had agreed on a five-year, $70 million contract.
The precise hang-up is unclear. Drew has had a series of ailments and injuries during his career, from a broken wrist to a bad knee to a sore shoulder. Trying to pinpoint one problematic area is virtually impossible. Mention Drew's health to anyone connected with the Sox these days and you get responses that are straight out of the Dan Duquette era.
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Does that mean the Red Sox are backing out of this deal?
It just means they are probably in the process of protecting themselves.
Boras, for what it's worth, has been through this sort of thing in the past. Three years ago, when catcher Ivan Rodriguez was a free agent, teams balked at offering him guaranteed money because of his history of recurring back problems. Rodriguez subsequently signed a four-year, $40 million contract with the Detroit Tigers, but there was a caveat: If Rodriguez had an injury to a specific area of his back that landed him on the disabled list for a minimum of 35 days, the Tigers could void the final two years and pay a "termination fee" of $5 million.
Is it a bad thing that I'm amused by this?
I'm telling you, I am very happy that the Rangers steered clear of this deal. I'm setting the over/under on games Drew appears in over the life of this contract at 525.