Bobby Cox and Tony La Russa faced off for the final time 28 years after first matchup

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Bobby Cox and Tony La Russa squared off last night for the 161st and final time, 28 years after their first matchup on May 4, 1982.
With a 94-67 record Cox has had the clear upper hand in essentially one full season’s worth of games against La Russa, although La Russa is 34-33 against Cox since 2000 and as Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post Dispatch notes also has a 6-4 record versus Cox in the postseason.
La Russa called the 69-year-old and soon-to-be-retiring Cox “a great competitor” whose “class is off the chart” and added “I hope he gets to the postseason.”
La Russa and Cox rank third and fourth all time with 2,626 and 2,495 victories, respectively, winning more games than any managers in baseball history except Connie Mack and John McGraw.

Report: Red Sox sign J.D. Martinez

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Update (5:16 PM ET): ESPN’s Pedro Gomez is reporting that the deal is final.

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Red Sox and outfielder J.D. Martinez are close to a deal. He takes care to note that the deal is not done yet and the details are not known yet.

Martinez, 30, entered the offseason as the top free agent hitter. Last season, between the Tigers and Diamondbacks, he hit a lusty .303/.376/.690 with 45 home runs and 104 RBI in 489 plate appearances. He missed the first 33 games of the season with a sprained right foot; one wonders what his numbers might’ve been like if he hadn’t been injured.

The Red Sox were the team most strongly linked to Martinez throughout the offseason, despite the relatively slow-moving market. Martinez said he wants to play in the outfield and the Red Sox are currently spoken for at all three positions with Andrew Benintendi, Jackie Bradley, and Mookie Betts. Hanley Ramirez is also penciled in at DH. Should the Martinez deal become official, the Red Sox may try to trade Bradley and move Benintendi to center field. If Martinez is willing to concede his outfield wishes, the Red Sox could slot him in at DH and move Ramirez to first base.

The AL East is shaping up to be a familiar two-horse race between the Red Sox and Yankees. The addition of Martinez, in a way, answers the Yankees’ addition of Giancarlo Stanton.