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Rangers to pick up Martin Perez’s 2018 option

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Martin Perez says he was informed by the Rangers that his 2018 option will be exercised,’s T.R. Sullivan reports. The option is worth $6 million and had a $2.45 million buyout.

Perez, 26, is completing his sixth season in the majors. Across 31 starts, he has a 4.83 ERA with a 113/61 K/BB ratio over 179 innings. The former top prospect has not quite lived up to expectations but has at least been able to have two full, healthy seasons in 2016-17.

Perez inked a four-year, $12.5 million contract extension with the Rangers in November 2013. The deal included three option years for 2018-20. His 2019 option is worth $7.5 million with a $750,000 buyout and his 2020 option is worth $9 million with a $250,000 buyout.

J.D. Martinez tells teams he prefers an outfield role

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Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.

That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.

Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.