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Could Twins, Rockies or maybe Jays take Salty from Red Sox?

The Red Sox might find it difficult to replace Saltalamacchia if he leaves via free agency. (USATSI)
The Red Sox might find it difficult to replace Saltalamacchia if he leaves via free agency. (USATSI)

At least the Twins, Rockies and possibly Blue Jays have been identified as among the teams that could be threats to steal free agent starting catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia from the incumbent Red Sox.

The Rangers look like another possibility to observers, but one person connected with the Rangers suggested a return for Saltalamacchia wasn't too likely at the moment. They have suggested they are going with Geovany Soto as their catcher, though they've at least looked at other free-agent catchers.

The Red Sox made an early two-year offer for Saltalamacchia but they showed strong interest in free-agent catchers Carlos Ruiz and Brian McCann, but it isn't known how anxious they are to go beyond two years. Boston made several key free-agent scores last winter with short-term deals, and the organization has some decent catching prospects on the way, especially Christian Vazquez and Blake Swihart.

The champion Red Sox need a catcher, and free-agent options are dwindling, with veterans A.J. Pierzynski and Dioner Navarro the next best options on the board.

The Twins had to move Joe Mauer to first base, the Rockies are considering moving Wilin Rosario to the outfield and the Blue Jays are presumably concerned about the offensive production from J.P. Arencibia (.227 on-base percentage last year).

Minnesota could be the biggest threat to the Red Sox, as the Twins have been linked a lot to Salty, who batted .273 last year with 14 home runs, 65 RBI and a career-high .804 OPS in helping the Red Sox win the 2013 World Series. The Twins' interest was first reported by Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. The Rockies and Jays have checked in, but the extent of their interest is uncertain.

The White Sox are also surveying the catching market but also aren't viewed as the most likely of the fits. The hometown Marlins (he's from West Palm Beach) also are looking for catching help but he may be out of their price range.

 
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