According to sources involved in the negotiations, there might be one more attempt made before midnight to hash out a deal between the Sox and Mike Lowell. After midnight the exclusive window the Sox have had with Lowell ends and he becomes a free agent.
It doesn't mean Lowell is 100 percent gone if the sides can't reach an agreement in the next few hours, but it certainly gives Lowell and the Sox a chance to seek a free-agent deal with another team and/or player.
The Red Sox have reportedly offered Lowell a three-year deal, but Lowell, according to sources familiar with the talks, is pining for four years. The Sox have extended themselves more than they thought they would in offering three years, but it's evident to the Lowell side that four years at $13 million or $14 million per year is attainable in the free-agent market.