A Japanese sports web site has reported the Red Sox may have interest in signing World Series MVP Hideki Matsui.
Nikkan Sports reported that the Red Sox are prepared to offer a multi-year deal to Matsui, who was the Yankees’ designated hitter this season. Matsui, 35, has battled knee problems that have kept him from playing outfield, but his hitting has been solid and timely.
In Game 6 of the World Series, Matsui drove in six of the Yankees’ seven runs as they closed out the Phillies.
Reports have indicated Matsui is looking for a contract with an annual salary of $8 million. According to USA Today’s player salary database, Matsui made $13 million each of the last four years with the Yankees.
UPDATE, 4:42 p.m.: Peter Abraham here from Chicago. This story out of Japan is quite likely untrue. Teams are not even allowed to make offers to free agents until Nov. 20 and Theo Epstein told us earlier today that he had only minimal talks involving free agents.
Beyond that, Matsui is a DH largely incapable of playing the outfield. He last played the field on June 15, 2008 and has since had two knee surgeries. The only way the Red Sox would have interest in Matsui would be if they were able to first trade David Ortiz.