Big deals: Werth to Nats, Padres-Bosox trade set
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLA: Jayson Werth and the Washington Nationals got an early jump on baseball's winter meetings. The Boston Red Sox were busy, too, completing their trade for Adrian Gonzalez.
Next up, another big name was sure to stir discussion: George Steinbrenner. The late New York Yankees owner was on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time, and the Veterans Committee was to release its voting results Monday morning.
Yet even before a Disney resort ballroom was set up to announce deals, the action started Sunday. Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo and agent Scott Boras waited in a corner while workers finished preparing the lights, podium microphone and Major League Baseball backdrop, then said Werth had agreed to a startling $126 million, seven-year contract.
The deal seemed to catch most everyone by surprise. "I didn't know until a few hours ago," Nationals manager Jim Riggleman admitted. "It all happened very quietly." Boston and San Diego took care of business when the Padres agreed to trade Gonzalez, their All-Star first baseman, to the Red Sox, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press. -Afp