BOSTON (AP) — Free agent first baseman Mitch Moreland was already excited about joining the Boston Red Sox when the team made a move that made it even more appealing.
One day after trading for five-time All-Start left-hander Chris Sale, the Red Sox agreed to terms with Moreland on a $5.5 million, one-year deal to share time with Hanley Ramirez at first base.
“It just shows you that we’re in it and trying to go all out and trying to make that happen,” Moreland told reporters Thursday. “I’m glad to be a part of it.”
Manager John Farrell said Ramirez will get most of his at-bats at designated hitter, filling the spot that opened up when David Ortiz retired. Moreland will play primarily at first base, where he won a Gold Glove after committing just two errors in 1,103 total chances last season.
Moreland, 31, batted .233 with 22 homers and 21 doubles last year with the Texas Rangers. In 14 games at Fenway Park, he has a.341 average with four homers, two doubles and eight RBIs, according to MassLive.com.
“It’s one of those things where I’m just loose, I feel like I’m comfortable (there),” Moreland said. “It kind of brings the kid out in you when you get to do it at a place like this. That’s what makes it fun, and this place is one of the best at it.”
To make room for Moreland on the 40-man roster, the Red Sox designated left-hander Williams Jerez for assignment.
The deal finishes off a busy winter meetings for the Red Sox.
Shortly before acquiring Sale from the Chicago White Sox for four minor leaguers — including No. 1 prospect Yoan Moncada — Boston acquired reliever Tyler Thornburg from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for a package that included infielder Travis Shaw. They also picked up the 2018 option on Farrell’s contract.
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