According to a major league source, the Red Sox continue to talk with free agent starters Roy Oswalt and Edwin Jackson about the possibility of signing with Boston for 2012. However, the source said, neither pitcher appears close to a deal to join the team. The source characterized a report that the team was "most likely out of the picture" on Jackson as inaccurate.
Oswalt, 34, was 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA, 93 strikeouts and 33 walks in 139 innings in 2011, a season in which he was sidelined for a time by a back injury. He is 159-93 with a 3.21 ERA in his 13-year career. Jackson was 12-9 with a 3.79 ERA in 199 2/3 innings (31 starts), striking out 148 and walking 62 in 2011, a season in which he was traded from the White Sox to a Cardinals team that ended up winning the World Series. The 28-year-old right-hander also has prior experience pitching in the American League East, having done so with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2007 and 2008.
In the aftermath of the trade of Marco Scutaro, even after the signing of outfielder Cody Ross, a Red Sox source said that the team does have the financial flexibility to add a starter, but GM Ben Cherington also has said on a number of occasions that the team would be comfortable forgoing the possibility of signing a starter now in order to preserve its financial flexibility to add a player or players either in spring training or during the regular season.
"We’re going to keep our eyes open and continue to talk to teams or free agents as things present themselves. I don’t know if we’ll do anything in the short-term," Cherington said on Monday. "If there are ways to add to the rotation now, we’ll do it now. If it’s in spring training, we’ll consider it then. If it’s at the start of the season, we’ll consdier it then. We don’t feel a need to do anything now. We feel we have enough to get the team ready for the season, but if something comes to us, either now or during spring training, we’d certainly consider it."
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