After finalizing Hanley Ramirez's five-year deal last night, the Red Sox continue their free agency sweep by agreeing to a five-year deal worth $100 million with third baseman Pablo Sandoval this morning.
The 28-year-old has spent his entire seven-year major league career with the Giants, posting a solid .294/.346/.465 line to go along with 106 home runs. "Kung Fu Panda" is also a big-time postseason performer. His .344/.389/.545 line over 167 playoff plate appearances played a huge part in all three of San Francisco's World Series championships in the past five years.
For the Red Sox, it appears like the Will Middlebrooks experiment has run its course, as the 23-year-old hit just .191/.256/.265 last year while playing third base. Red Sox third basemen as a whole only managed a .656 OPS in 2014, good for 24th in the majors. Sandoval's arrival should provide an immediate upgrade.
The 2013 World Series Champions have shown that they mean business heading to the 2015 season by signing arguably the top two position players available in free agency. Even if they may have overpaid somewhat, the Red Sox, a couple of months removed from a last-place finish, have put themselves right back into contention in a wide-open American League East division.