Slugging catcher Mike Napoli, who hit .227 last season with an .812 OPS for the Rangers, has said he would prefer to remain with Texas.
Slugging catcher Mike Napoli, who hit .227 last season with an .812 OPS for the Rangers, has said he would prefer to remain with Texas.
tony gutierrez/associated press

The Mike Napoli tour will continue this week with the free agent expected to sit down with the Rangers Wednesday.

Napoli has already met with the Mariners and Red Sox and is putting himself in a position to make a decision before the start of baseball’s winter meetings next week in Nashville.

Napoli, 31, has been with Texas the last two seasons. He has said he would prefer to stay with the Rangers but the team may not be willing to give Napoli the long-term contract he is seeking.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Napoli has been a catcher during his seven-year career but the Red Sox see the righthanded power hitter filling their hole at first base.

Napoli hit .227 last season with an .812 OPS.

Coaching staff nearly set

The Red Sox are down to four candidates to become hitting coach. Former major leaguer Craig Counsell, a special assistant to Brewers general manager Doug Melvin, withdrew his name from consideration according to Fox Sports.

The Red Sox completed their interview process Saturday when they spoke to Yankees minor league hitting coach Greg Colbrunn. A decision is expected later this week.

The Sox also interviewed Scott Fletcher, Victor Rodriguez, and Rick Schu. The team is planning to hire a hitting coach and an assistant.

DeJesus returns

Infielder Ivan DeJesus Jr., who was designated for assignment last week, cleared waivers and was sent outright to Triple A Pawtucket.

DeJesus was one of the players obtained from the Dodgers on Aug. 25. He was 0 for 8 in eight games for the Red Sox. The 25-year-old hit .304 in 67 Triple A games.

The Red Sox also signed righthanders David Carpenter and Sandy Rosario to minor league contracts. They were designated for assignment last week.

Carpenter was obtained from Toronto as part of the trade to compensate the Blue Jays for manager John Farrell coming to the Red Sox. Rosario was claimed off waivers from the Marlins on Oct. 17.

Brentz honored

Outfielder Bryce Brentz was named to the Arizona Fall League All-Prospect team as selected by the mangers and coaches.

Brentz hit .297 with two home runs and 11 RBIs in 17 games in Arizona. The 23-year-old hit .290 with 17 home runs and 76 RBIs in 127 minor league games last season, mostly for Double A Portland.

Brentz was a supplemental first-round draft pick in 2010.