Mets willing to give Bay something Sox weren't

December, 29, 2009

Any chance of left fielder Jason Bay returning to the Red Sox, which essentially ended when Boston told him they were going in another direction (which turned out to be John Lackey) ended with news that Bay has come to terms with the New York Mets.

The difference between the two offers? The Red Sox were unwilling to go past a fourth year, while the Mets, according to terms reported by ESPN's Jerry Crasnick, included a vesting fifth-year option with readily attainable performance levels.

The Mets' deal, according to Crasnick, was a guaranteed four-year contract for $66 million, with a vesting option that could make the total package worth $80 million.

The Red Sox, while satisfied with a new outfield arrangement that includes Mike Cameron and Jeremy Hermida, remain quietly engaged in discussions for free-agent third baseman Adrian Beltre, according to an industry source.

The Beltre talks, expected to resume after the new year, have been complicated by the voiding of the Mike Lowell trade.

The Sox remain engaged in Beltre discussions even though his signing could put them over the luxury tax threshold.

Gordon Edes

ESPN Staff Writer



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