Outfielder Brad Wilkerson has left the Red Sox and won't be in the major league team's plans heading into the regular season. Wilkerson, who had signed a minor-league deal, had an opt-out option in his deal that permitted him to leave the team up until April 1. Wilkerson was hitting just .119 in 42 at-bats, striking out 18 times. The competition for the spot to fill the back-up first baseman/fifth outfielder role -- one that Mark Kotsay figures to be in line for upon returning from back surgery sometime in May -- now figures to be coming down to Chris Carter and Jeff Bailey. The left-handed hitting Carter is hitting .350, while Bailey, a right-handed hitter, has totaled a .357 batting average. Both are considered no better than average defenders. Carter has options left, while Bailey is on a minor-league deal, so neither would be forced to clear waivers.
If he did make the team, Wilkerson would have received  $275,000 for reaching each of the following roster thresholds: 60, 90, 120, and 150 days on the active major league roster. He would have also received an additional $200,000 for reaching 300, 350, 400, 450, and 500 plate appearances. The entirety of the package could have reached as much as $2.5 million.