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Sandoval signed with Boston for $ 95 million

Sandoval signed with Boston for $ 95 million

Posted by Dubraswka Aguilar on November 25, 2014

The Giants and the fans in San Francisco are losing their Kung Fu Panda. Pablo Sandoval agreed Monday to a five-year contract with the Red Sox reportedly worth about $100 million, spurning a similar offer from the Giants.

Sandoval’s departure will leave a lot of holes: in the middle of the Giants’ lineup and in the hearts of fans who came to love their roly-poly, bad-ball-hitting third baseman.

“It was a terrific story that he wrote while he was here,” assistant general manager Bobby Evans said shortly after speaking to Sandoval. “He’s been such an important part and an integral part of this organization for a long time. It is hard. It really hasn’t sunk in yet.”

Sandoval’s lead agent, Gustavo Vasquez, spent much of the day denying that a deal with the Red Sox was done. He finally notified the Giants about 2:20 p.m. PST that Sandoval had chosen Boston.

The Red Sox are expected to introduce Sandoval at a news conference Tuesday, when they also could announce a reported four-year, $88 million deal with former Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez.

Sandoval phoned Evans on Monday as he had promised. “It was somewhat of an emotional phone call,” Evans said. “He was overwhelmed with this process but said he was ready for a new challenge.” reported Boston’s contract figures of five years and $100 million. Evans said the Giants offered a five-year, $95 million deal and expressed a willingness to bump that. Both teams offered an option for a sixth year.

Sandoval posted a message on his Instagram account Monday night to “the greatest fans in San Francisco,” saying, “Leaving the #sfgiants and this city I love is the most difficult decision I have made. I have grown up w/you, laughed & cried w/you & you have blessed me w your support, friendship & love. ... My heart will always be in #SF.”

However, by taking a nearly identical deal from the Red Sox, Sandoval lent credence to the belief that he was set on leaving San Francisco all along.

Perhaps he was insulted with the Giants’ first effort to sign him to an extension in spring training. The team first discussed a three-year, $40 million deal. At the time, Vasquez pooh-poohed those figures as “crazy.”

The Giants had not publicly detailed their side of those negotiations but now say that $40 million was a starting point. Before the sides agreed to table the talks in the spring, Sandoval rejected what the club said was a five-year contract with a vesting option for a sixth year that would have paid the third baseman as much $91 million if he reached incentives, folding in the $8.25 million he was set to earn in 2014.

On Monday, multiple sources provided a different reasoning for Sandoval’s departure, saying he preferred Boston for the option to become a designated hitter later in the contract, after David Ortiz’s retirement. Perhaps, too, Sandoval wanted a chance to prove himself on one of baseball’s biggest stages.

The Giants now have a big bat to replace. Sandoval was their cleanup hitter for most of 2014.






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