Around MLB: Victorino agrees with Red Sox

Around MLB: Victorino agrees with Red Sox
December 4, 2012, 9:30 pm
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Free-agent outfielder Shane Victorino and the Red Sox agreed Tuesday to a $39 million, three-year contract, Boston's second big addition during the winter meetings.

Nicknamed The Flyin' Hawaiian, Victorino tweeted that he planned to spend the day in Maui on a snorkeling trip aboard the Alii Nui catamaran.

"Just agreed to join the Boston @RedSox in the middle of paradise," he tweeted. "#BLESSED!!! Can't wait to get to Boston!"

Victorino's deal is subject to a physical, as is the $39 million, three-year contract the Red Sox agreed to Monday with Mike Napoli.

Victorino hit a combined .255 with 11 home runs and 55 RBIs last season for Philadelphia and the Los Angeles Dodgers. He also stole a career-high 39 bases. The Dodgers obtained Victorino in a late July trade with the Phillies.

A two-time All-Star and three-time Gold Glove winner, Victorino turned 32 on Friday. He also had been pursued by the Cleveland Indians.

Victorino played mostly center field for the Phillies and shifted to left with the Dodgers. He likely would play right field for the Red Sox but could shift to center if Jacoby Ellsbury is traded or leaves as a free agent after next season.

"It's probably the toughest right field in baseball to play, just in terms of the space to cover," new Boston manager John Farrell said earlier in the day. "So that range comes into play. And yet you try to combine the best range available along with offensive production. It might not be your prototypical right fielder where it's a power bat because we do value the defense in that area. That's not to exclude anyone, but defense takes a high priority, in that position at Fenway particularly."

Wright, Mets finalize $138 million, 8-year deal
    
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- David Wright and the New York Mets finalized a $138 million, eight-year contract Tuesday, the largest deal in the team's history.

The contract was agreed to last week, subject to a physical, and the team said Wright planned to discuss it Wednesday at the winter meetings.

"I've grown up in this organization and made lifelong friendships with teammates, uniform personnel and front office staff. I'm grateful for the opportunity to finish what I've started," Wright said.

Wright's new deal replaces the $16 million salary he was to have earned under a 2013 option in his previous contract. The new deal contains deferred money.

"We're thrilled for the organization and our fans that David will be a Met for many years to come," Mets chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon said. "As great a player as David's been with us on the field -- one of the greatest and most popular Mets ever -- he's been equally outstanding in the community."

Without the agreement, Wright could have become a free agent after the 2013 season. New York also is trying to reach a new deal with NL Cy Young Award winner R.A. Dickey, who is signed for $5.25 million next year and then can become a free agent.

Mets general manager Sandy Alderson spoke briefly Monday with Dickey's agent, Bo McKinnis.

"I don't think we've reached the point where there isn't something possible, but time will tell," Alderson said. "I think we've always said we'd like to sign R.A. and keep him in New York."

Hagen wins Spink Award for baseball writing    

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Longtime Philadelphia writer Paul Hagen has won the J.G. Taylor Spink Award for baseball coverage.

The Baseball Writers' Association of America announced the award Tuesday at the winter meetings. Hagen will be honored at the Hall of Fame's induction weekend July 26-29 in Cooperstown, N.Y.

The 61-year-old Hagen has spent nearly 40 years covering the game and won the award for "meritorious contributions to baseball writing." He beat out Jim Hawkins and Russell Schneider in a vote by BBWAA members.

Hagen started his career covering the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1974 for the San Bernardino Sun-Telegram. He later covered the Texas Rangers for 10 years with the Dallas Times Herald and Fort Worth Star-Telegram, then joined the Philadelphia Daily News in 1987. He worked last season for MLB.com.

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