UPDATE: the Red Sox deny a $52 million ceiling for Beltre

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UPDATE:  This morning the Boston Globe reported that the Red Sox would not offer Adrian Beltre in excess of four years, $52 million.  Theo Epstein has now denied that report to the Globe.

This is one of those “who knows?” things. I mean, sure, you have to take Epstein at face value because that’s the best information we have right now.  But, it’s worth noting, if the Red Sox had made a determination of an offer ceiling, it’s not like they’d confirm it publicly.  Ahh, rumor season.

8:59 A.M.: That’s what Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe is saying anyway.

Am I nuts in thinking that there is no way someone doesn’t beat that?  The Angles and Giants spring to mind. Several other teams would likely want to get in on that action too. I mean, sure, he’ll be 32 next season, and maybe he’s “worth” that in some abstract sense. But the market isn’t an abstract sense, and he’s a pretty unique property this winter. He’s also a Boras client.

I think that offer gets topped. With all respect to Cafardo’s source, maybe even by the Red Sox.

Adam Eaton sustains leg injury after tripping over first base

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Nationals’ outfielder Adam Eaton was carried off the field after stumbling over first base on Friday night. In the ninth inning of the Nationals’ 7-5 loss to the Mets, Eaton appeared to catch his ankle on the bag as he ran out an infield single, suffering a leg injury on the fall. He was unable to put pressure on his left leg after the play and required assistance by two of the Nationals’ athletic trainers as he exited the field.

Eaton is scheduled to undergo an MRI on Saturday, but Nationals’ manager Dusty Baker told reporters that it “doesn’t look too good.” It’s the first significant leg injury the outfielder has sustained since 2014, when he went on the 15-day disabled list with a hamstring strain. He’ll likely be replaced by Michael Taylor in center field for the next couple of games, though that could be a temporary fix as the Nationals seek a better solution during Eaton’s recovery process.

Madison Bumgarner likely sidelined through the All-Star break

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It’s been just over a week since Giants’ left-hander Madison Bumgarner got a serious scare after a nasty dirt bike accident. He escaped with bruised ribs and a Grade 2 strain of his left shoulder AC joint, but there was some speculation that the injuries would cause a significant, if not permanent, setback in the southpaw’s career. Thankfully, things aren’t looking quite so bleak today. Not only will Bumgarner not require surgery, but he could return as soon as the week following the All-Star break, the Giants said Friday.

Of course, that timeline is wholly dependent on how smoothly the recovery process goes, so nothing is set in stone yet. NBC Sports Bay Area’s Alex Pavlovic estimates 2-3 months of rest and rehab, including “two months before he can get back on the mound and then another three to four weeks of throwing and rehab starts before he’s big league-ready.” It’s a long and laborious schedule, but still looks much better than any surgical alternative.

Prior to the accident, Bumgarner was working on a solid start to the 2017 season. He maintained a 3.00 ERA, 1.3 BB/9 and 9.3 SO/9 through 27 innings with the club, though his average 1.75 runs of support per start fed into an 0-3 record.