UPDATE: At this point who the hell knows what's going on with Beltre?

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7:51 P.M.: OK, now we do know what the hell is going on: Beltre to Boston, one year, $9 million, with a player option for $5 million.

5:37 PM
: First the Sox were in, then out, and now they’re apparently in again, as Gordon Edes at ESPN Boston is reporting that the Sox have actually made an offer to Beltre, but face serious competition from the Orioles, Athletics and Angels. Earlier, Amalie Benjamin tweeted that since Beltre lives on the west coast, he may just want to stay out there.

At this point, your guess is as good as ours.

2:50 P.M.
Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald tweets that it isn’t the Red Sox that are in on Beltre. In fact, he says that Boston is “not currently in the mix at all.”  Hmmm. I’ll have to leave the west coast guess as the A’s until I hear a single other west coast team that is interested. But who else on the east needs a third baseman?

1:06 P.M.: Yahoo!’s Tim Brown tweets that Adrian Beltre is “close to choosing from between two clubs, source says, one from each coast.”  Brown suspects that the two clubs are Oakland and Boston, which makes sense given previous reporting, speculation and whatnot.

Boston has got to be the favorite, simply because the Beltre-Boston talk has gone on for so much longer, and because Boston seems so much more willing and is definitely much more able to meet Beltre’s reported asking price of $10 million.

No, I don’t think he’ll quite get that, but unless he agrees to a substantial discount from numbers he was asking for a mere two weeks ago, or unless Oakland goes well beyond what a historically-frugal team which drew the lowest number of fans in baseball last year seems likely to pay,  there’s no way I can see Beltre in an Athletics’ uniform.

Giants interested in John Lackey

John Lackey
AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast
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Ben Cafardo of the Boston Globe speculated on Sunday that there might be a connection between the Giants and veteran free agent right-hander John Lackey, and now FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that San Francisco is indeed in pursuit.

Rosenthal says the Giants, “like most clubs seeking pitching, [are] examining [a] wide range of options” in this starter-heavy free agent market. Lackey would make a ton of sense for any contender on something like a two-year deal. His free agency is tied to draft pick compensation, but that shouldn’t be much of a deterrent.

The 37-year-old right-hander registered a career-best 2.77 ERA across 218 innings (33 starts) this past season for the National League Central-champion Cardinals and he was St. Louis’ most reliable starter during the playoffs.

It’s well known that he wants to remain in the National League.

Angels sign catcher Geovany Soto to one-year contract

Geovany Soto
AP Photo/Alex Gallardo
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As first reported by beat writer Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times, the Angels have signed free agent catcher Geovany Soto to a one-year major league contract. MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez says the deal is worth $2.8 million guaranteed.

Soto will offer some veteran presence at catcher for the Halos alongside 25-year-old Carlos Perez, who hit .250/.299/.346 as a rookie in 2015.

Soto slashed .219/.301/.406 with nine homers in 78 games this summer for the White Sox.

The 32-year-old backstop is a .246/.331/.434 career hitter at the major league level.

White Sox acquire right-hander Tommy Kahnle from Rockies

Tommy Kahnle
AP Photo/David Zalubowski
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According to the official Twitter account of the Chicago White Sox, the club acquired right-hander Tommy Kahnle from the Rockies on Tuesday evening in exchange for minor league pitcher Yency Almonte.

Kahnle was designated for assignment by the Rockies last week in a flurry of moves made in preparation of next month’s Rule 5 Draft. The 26-year-old former fifth-round pick posted an ugly 4.86 ERA, 1.77 WHIP, and 39/28 K/BB ratio in 33 1/3 innings this past season for Colorado and he wasn’t much better at Triple-A Albuquerque.

Almonte, 21, had a 3.41 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, and 110/38 K/BB ratio in 137 1/3 innings this past season between Low-A Kannapolis and High-A Winston-Salem.

It’s a straight one-for-one deal of two non-prospects, and the timing of it — in the evening, with Thanksgiving approaching — has our Craig Calcaterra wondering whether an executive was just trying to get out of some family responsibilities …

Mark McGwire to become the Padres bench coach

Los Angeles Dodgers batting coach Mark McGwire roams the field during practice for the National League baseball championship series Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013, in St. Louis. The Dodgers are scheduled to play the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 1 of the NLCS on Friday in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

The other day Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reported that the Padres were in discussions with former Dodgers hitting coach Mark McGwire about their bench coach job. Today Jon Heyman reports that the deal is done and will soon be announced.

McGwire has been the hitting coach for Los Angeles for the past three seasons. When his contract was not renewed following the end of 2015 he was rumored to be up for the Diamondbacks’ hitting coach job. He likely view staying in Southern California to be a plus, as he makes his home in Irvine, which is around 90 miles from Petco Park. That’s a long commute, but Mac can afford the gas, I guess.