The offseason is officially upon us following the St. Louis Cardinals' victory in the 2011 World Series, and free agents have filed with the Major League Baseball offices, including eight players from the Boston Red Sox.
David Ortiz and Jonathan Papelbon highlight the group of eight Red Sox players who filed for free agency. Joining Ortiz and Papelbon are J.D. Drew, Erik Bedard, Conor Jackson, Trever Miller, Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield.
Of that group, it's likely that Ortiz and Papelbon will be labeled Type-A free agents and Varitek would be labeled a Type-B free agent, per WEEI's Rob Bradford. That means if the Red Sox lost out on Ortiz or Papelbon after offering them arbitration and having them decline and leave the team, they would receive two draft picks while receiving only one for Varitek in the same scenario.
It's likely that, of the eight free agents, the Red Sox are likely to bring back a maximum of four or five. Papelbon and Ortiz may likely return, despite all of the offseason controversy, while it's not inconceivable that the team would bring back captain Varitek and Wakefield. Erik Bedard, J.D. Drew, Conor Jackson and Trever Miller are likely to not return.