By Matt Snyder
The Red Sox and free agent pitcher Vicente Padilla are in serious discussions about a contract and appear headed toward a deal, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman has learned.
While it seems like Padilla has been around forever, he's still only 34 and has reportedly been throwing upwards up 96 miles per hour in winter ball. Padilla only pitched 8 2/3 innings out of the Dodgers bullpen last year before a neck injury ended his season. In 2010, Padilla was a starter for the Dodgers and went 6-5 with a 4.07 ERA and 1.08 WHIP.
FREE AGENT TRACKER
The Red Sox are obviously eyeing starting pitching depth with John Lackey out for the season and Daisuke Matsuzaka still recovering from his 2011 season-ending injury. The Red Sox recently signed Aaron Cook to a minor-league contract and now appear close to landing Padilla. Jon Lester, Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz are obviously the front three of the rotation. Daniel Bard is going to be converted to a starter and the fifth spot might come down to Alfredo Acevas, Cook and Padilla.
On another note, if Beckett and Padilla were both in the rotation, I believe the Red Sox would boast the two slowest-to-home pitchers in baseball (in terms of how long they take between pitches).
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