It appears that the Red Sox have reached a preliminary agreement to trade Mike Lowell to the Rangers for catcher Max Ramirez, according to a report on foxsports.com.
Physicals will still be required, and could potentially hold up the deal based on the issues that Lowell has had with his hip (surgery a year ago) and thumb (at the end of the season). A source with knowledge of the situation said that the deal is not yet completed.
The Red Sox could not be reached for comment late last night.
According to the report, the Red Sox would be taking on a significant portion of the $12 million due Lowell in 2010, the final year of the three-year deal he signed after the 2007 World Series year. Lowell won the World Series MVP award that year.
Ramirez, 25, is not regarded as an particularly skilled defensive catcher, though he is prized for his bat. He could evolve into more of a designated hitter/first baseman than a catcher.
Lowell, on the other hand, is not likely to play third base in Texas. The Rangers already have Michael Young to do that. But Lowell, 35, has said recently that he would be open to playing first base. He could also be used as a DH.
It is likely that the Sox have another deal in mind, given their desire to send Lowell elsewhere. Scott Boras said yesterday that five or six teams are in on Adrian Beltre, and the Sox could be one of those clubs. The team could also go after a first baseman and move Kevin Youkilis to third base.