The Red Sox have been trying to work out a contract extension with Cody Ross since July. But it’s now November, and it suddenly sounds like the free agent corner outfielder will not be brought back for 2013.
“It hasn’t been really what I would say close,” Ross told Rob Bradford of Boston’s WEEI.com about the negotiations he’s had thus far with the Red Sox front office. “Now it’s going to be more complex with other teams involved. It’s not just [the Red Sox]. They had a ton of opportunities. Now it only makes sense to listen to other teams.”
Ross, 31, batted .267/.326/.481 with 22 home runs and 81 RBI in 130 games this season, but his OPS was .921 in the hitter-friendly confines of Fenway Park and just .684 on the road.
The Red Sox declined an opportunity to make him a one-year, $13.3 million qualifying offer.
No surprise here: The Astros are headed back to the postseason to defend their title following a landslide 11-3 win over the Angels on Friday. This figures to be their third playoff run since 2015, though they have yet to wrap up the AL West with a division title.
First baseman Yuli Gurriel led the charge on Friday, smashing a grand slam in the first inning and tacking on a two-run homer in the second and RBI single in the fifth to help the Astros to a seven-run lead. The Angels eventually returned fire, first with Mike Trout‘s 418-foot homer in the sixth, then with an RBI hit from Francisco Arcia in the seventh, but they couldn’t close the gap in time to overtake the Astros.
On the mound, right-hander Gerrit Cole clinched his 15th win of the year after holding the Angels to seven innings of three-run, 12-strikeout ball. His sixth strikeout of the night — delivered on an 83.1-MPH knuckle curveball to Kaleb Cowart — also marked the 1,000th strikeout of his career to date. He was backed by flawless performances by lefty reliever Tony Sipp and rookie right-hander Dean Deetz, both of whom turned in scoreless innings as the offense barreled toward an 11-3 finish with Jake Marisnick‘s sac bunt and George Springer‘s three-run shot in the eighth.
Despite having qualified for the playoffs, the Astros still carry a magic number of 6 as they look to clinch a third straight division title. They’re currently up against the Athletics, who entered Friday’s contest against the Twins just four games back of first place in the AL West.