Pablo Sandavol has reportedly agreed to a five year deal with the Boston Red Sox. Various news outlets have reported on a deal over the weekend. A CBS Sports report states the agreement has been made official on Monday. The Boston Globe reported on Friday that the deal is originally thought to be worth $95 million but that the deal could be larger.
Sandoval spent his first seven MLB seasons with the San Francisco Giants, helping lead them to three World Series titles in five years. He set an MLB postseason record with 26 hits during last month’s World Series run. He hit .429 and knocked in four runs during the seven-game World Series against the Kansas City Royals.
The Red Sox seem intent on improving their offense for next season after missing the postseason in 2014, a year after winning the World Series. Boston is also reportedly linked to infielder Hanley Ramirez. If Boston lands him, they will have a pretty boastful lineup with Ramirez and Sandoval. The team is rumored to be looking to trade power-hitter Yoenis Cedpedes, who the team traded for during last season.
Pablo Sandoval leaves behind a great legacy with the Giants, as he agrees to the five year deal with Boston. The Venezuela native was signed by the team in 2005. After spending three years in the minors, Sandoval was called up and made an immediate impact as the Giants third baseman.
He hit a respectable .345 batting average with three home runs and 24 runs batted in through 41 games as a rookie in 2008. He followed that up by hitting .330 with 25 home runs and 90 RBIs in 153 games in 2009. He finished seventh in the National League Most Valuable Player voting that season. Due to MLB services rules, he was classified as a rookie.
He experienced a sophomore slump in 2010. He struggled through his worst statistical season, hitting .268 with 13 home runs and 63 RBIs. He was benched for Juan Uribe at third base for the World Series, against the Texas Rangers. Sandoval was limited to three at-bats during the first of three Giants titles during their latest run.
Overweight and unproductive Sandoval participated in the campaign dubbed “Operation Panda” aimed to get him down to a fit weight. The dedication seemingly worked as Sandoval made the first of two All-Star Game appearances. He became the first position player to make the All-Star Classic since Barry Bonds in 2007.
Sandoval had not reached .300 or 20 home runs since, during the regular season. But he is more known for his productive postseasons, a main reason why Boston sought after him, as he has now agreed to the five year deal. During the Giants second World Series title in 2012, he hit .363 with six home runs and 13 RBIs in 16 games. More remarkable he hit .500 with a .529 on-base percentage and a 1.125 slugging percentage in 70 plate appearances during the Giants four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers in the World Series. His performance earned him the World Series MVP.
Analysts see the loss of Sandoval as a huge blow to the Giants. Assistant general manager Bobby Evans previously felt confident they had a shot to retain the third baseman. But Evans did admit that money and years would play a heavy role in Sandoval’s decision. Ultimately, the Red Sox provided enough to pry the “Panda” from the Bay Area, as Pablo Sandoval agree to a five-year deal with Boston. Now San Francisco is forced to find a suitable replacement as they look to win a fourth World Series title in six years.
By King Motley
Photo by Rob Shenk – Flickr License