The Boston Red Sox made a multiyear contract offer to first baseman Mike Napoli, but he plans to test free agency first, Yahoo! Sports reported Friday.
Napoli, 32, signed a one-year, $5 million contract before the season after a three-year, $39 million deal fell through over concerns the team had about his injured hips. With incentives, he ended up making $13 million.
Because of his degenerative hip condition, he converted from catching to playing first base.
Napoli had a batting average of .259 with 23 home runs and career-highs in doubles (38), RBIs (92) and plate appearances (578) over 139 games.
Before reportedly making the multiyear contract overture, the team made Napoli a $14.1 million qualifying offer, which he is expected to formally decline by Monday’s 5 p.m. deadline.
If Napoli declines the qualifying offer and signs with another team, the Red Sox will receive an additional draft pick at the end of the first round next year. MassLive.com reported that the team may go with Mike Carp as its starting first baseman if it loses Napoli.
Carp had a batting average of .296 with 18 doubles and nine home runs in 243 plate appearances this year.
Free agents, include Corey Hart, Mark Reynolds and former Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis might also be pursued.