Per Buster Olney of ESPN, Red Sox leadoff hitter and center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury is likely to depart after he was not able to agree with the front office on a long-term deal over the past few years.
Boston attempted to sign Ellsbury after his fantastic campaign in 2011 that had him finish second in the MVP voting, but the team and Ellsbury's agent, Scott Boras, could not close the gap between the $100 million offer and the $130 million price tag. After last season, the Red Sox once again tried to ink him, but talks did not get far after he was offered approximately $15 million per season.
This year, Ellsbury put together an excellent campaign. The 30-year-old hit .298 in the regular season with nine home runs and 53 RBI while sporting a .355 on-base percentage.
Should Ellsbury and Boston not be able to work out a contract at the last minute, the speedster will hit the free agent market and be the most coveted outfielder in the game. It is believed the hitting-challenged Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers will make a strong run at him.