CAP CANA, Dominican Republic Adrian Beltre said just a few minutes ago that he could sign a deal "right now if I wanted to."
But the free agent third baseman is waiting to see what other options open up to him and maintained that his preference is to return to the Red Sox.
"I got used to seeing that park full in the first inning and still full in the ninth inning. I liked that atmosphere," he said during an exclusive interview with the Globe. "If everything was close to the same, I would go back to Boston. But we have to see. The number of years is what is important to me."
Beltre flew from Los Angeles for David Ortiz's charity event here. He arrived at a seaside reception tonight with Hall of Famer Jim Rice and immediately gathered in a group to talk to Ortiz, Daniel Bard and Darnell McDonald.
"I would to play with these guys again," Beltre said. "I was disappointed Victor (Martinez) left because he helped make me comfortable. But I had a feeling that would happen because he wasn't happy with how (the Red Sox) approached it with him. But I would still come back. I liked playing there and I want to be with a contender."
Beltre said he could arrive at a decision soon. He would not get into specifics about what teams he was considering beyond saying he still hoped to return to Boston.
"These guys are my friends and they made me feel part of the team, he said. Theres a lot going on right now, but I do hope I stay with the Red Sox.