The Red Sox are the “early favorite” for James Shields. We’re doing this already?

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Andy McCullough of the KC Star has a story today noting, quite correctly, that in addition to trying to pitch his Kansas City Royals into the World Series, James Shields is also auditioning for a big free agent contract after the season ends:

At 32, he figures to be the most affordable of the three. Kansas City is expected to at least attempt to retain him, even after Shields rejects a one-year, $15 million qualifying offer, but the competition in the market should be fierce. Boston has emerged as the early favorite for his services, but plenty of other clubs should be in the mix.

First a contract extension for J.J. Hardy, then a weird rumor about a Yasiel Puig trade and now we’re handicapping free agent destinations for guys who are still playing.

And you thought it was offensive that they sold pumpkin beer in July and that Macy’s has Christmas crap up already.