The Red Sox have talked to the Royals about Jeff Francoeur

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I don’t post this because it’s likely to lead to anything. In fact the guy who reported that the Sox and Royals have discussed Francoeur — Jon Paul Morosi — said that they were “exploratory” and not likely to go anywhere. But the mere existence of Francoeur talks with a team other than Atlanta makes me feel a tad better about the state of the world, so I gotta cling on to it like grim death.

To be honest, though, Francoeur could help the Sox if they kept him in a strict platoon.  Same goes for just about anyone.  I have little faith that Atlanta would platoon him, though, so his very presence on the market causes me great vexation and agitation.

Josh Donaldson is still seeking a long-term deal with the Blue Jays

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If it were up to him, Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson would finish the remainder of his career in Toronto. In fact, he’d be “ticked pink” if the club decided to sign him to a long-term deal. Whether the Blue Jays share that sentiment is still unclear, as Donaldson said Saturday that the team has yet to engage his agent in extension talks.

“I’ve said that I wanted to be here,” he told MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm. “That’s pretty much all I can say. I’m not the one who makes the decisions, nor would I try to put them in the position to do that. Like I said, I believe the situation will become more fluid when the time is right.”

That doesn’t necessarily mean an extension is out of the question. The Blue Jays reached an unprecedented one-year, $23 million agreement with the three-time All-Star in arbitration, and have been reticent to field trade offers despite continued interest from the Cardinals this winter.

Donaldson, 32, is poised to enter his eighth season in the majors and fourth with the Blue Jays. In 2017, he batted .270/.385/.559 with 33 home runs and a .944 OPS in 496 plate appearances, ranking sixth among all major league third baseman with 5.0 fWAR. He’s scheduled to enter free agency following the 2018 season.