Report: Ramirez finalizing deal with Red Sox

We wrote earlier in this space that the Red Sox are reportedly pursuing two big free-agent infielders, Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval. It appears they’ve already come to an agreement with one of them.

FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal tweeted late Sunday night that Ramirez will fly to Boston on Monday morning to finalize a deal with the Red Sox. Rosenthal, citing sources, also tweeted that Ramirez’s deal “will be in the range of” $90 million over five years.

What remains to be seen is what the Sox will do with Ramirez.

They have an offer out to third baseman Pablo Sandoval, but Ramirez could play there if Sandoval signs elsewhere. They have young shortstop Xander Bogaerts, but they could deal the former top prospect to acquire a starting pitcher. They have Yoenis Cespedes in left field, but with Ramirez reportedly willing to play anywhere, they could put Ramirez in left and either move around Cespedes or trade him.

Ramirez, who will turn 31 next month, began his career in Boston before he was traded to the Marlins in 2005. Arguably the best overall hitter on the free agent market this offseason, Ramirez batted .283/.369/.448 with 13 home runs and 71 RBIs in 128 games for the Dodgers last year.

Ramirez, a friend of Red Sox slugger David Ortiz, has spent nearly his entire career at shortstop. He has started 1,069 games at short and only 97 at third base.

-Adam Berry

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