David Price could return to the Red Sox by next week

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On the heels of an apparent triceps injury for fellow starter Drew Pomeranz, Red Sox’ hurler David Price is eyeing an early return to the rotation this month. Price has been rehabbing a left elbow injury since early March and was scheduled to make his first rehab start in Triple-A Pawtucket on Sunday afternoon. A rainout forced him to scrap the start, but he built his pitch count to 75 pitches over five innings of a simulated indoor game instead.

While there’s no concrete timetable for the left-hander’s return, club manager John Farrell told reporters that Price will pitch one real start for Triple-A Pawtucket on Friday. If he makes it through an estimated 85-90 pitches with no issues, he could be cleared to rejoin the Red Sox’ rotation sometime in the next week or two. As Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal put it, “the issue for Price is more about the number of pitches he has thrown than testing his left elbow in game action against minor-league competition.” There’s significant upside for the injury-riddled Red Sox if they can get one of their best starters back in the fold, but no sense in rushing his return until he can handle a full workload again.

Bogaerts reportedly heading to the Padres for 11 years, $280 million

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SAN DIEGO — The San Diego Padres and Xander Bogaerts agreed to a blockbuster $280 million, 11-year contract Wednesday night, adding the All-Star slugger to an already deep lineup.

A person familiar with the negotiations confirmed the contract to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because it was pending a physical.

The Padres already had Fernando Tatis Jr. at shortstop, but he missed the entire season because of injuries and an 80-game suspension for testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug.

San Diego also met with Aaron Judge and Trea Turner before the big stars opted for different teams. The Padres reached the NL Championship Series this year before losing to the Phillies.

“From our standpoint, you want to explore and make sure we’re looking at every possible opportunity to get better,” general manager A.J. Preller said before the Bogaerts deal surfaced. “We’ve got a real desire to win and do it for a long time.”

The 30-year-old Bogaerts was one of the headliners in a stellar group of free-agent shortstops that also included Turner, Carlos Correa and Dansby Swanson.

Bogaerts, who’s from Aruba, terminated his $120 million, six-year contract with Boston after the season. The four-time All-Star forfeited salaries of $20 million for each of the next three years after hitting .307 with 15 homers and 73 RBIs in 150 games.

Bogaerts is a .292 hitter with 156 homers and 683 RBIs in 10 big league seasons – all with Boston. He helped the Red Sox win the World Series in 2013 and 2018.

Bogaerts becomes the latest veteran hitter to depart Boston after the Red Sox traded Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers in February 2020. Rafael Devers has one more year of arbitration eligibility before he can hit the market.

Bogaerts had his best big league season in 2019, batting .309 with a career-best 33 homers and 117 RBIs. He had 23 homers and 103 RBIs in 2018.

In 44 postseason games, Bogaerts is a .231 hitter with five homers and 16 RBIs.