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Last updated: October 31. 2013 2:37PM - 152 Views
Associated Press



Boston Red Sox's Mike Napoli hits an RBI single during the fourth inning of Game 6 of baseball's World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013, in Boston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Boston Red Sox's Mike Napoli hits an RBI single during the fourth inning of Game 6 of baseball's World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013, in Boston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
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(AP) The Boston Red Sox built a World Series champion in 2013 by avoiding the expensive free agents they've made mistakes on in the past.


They'll have to do it again this winter.


Center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury is a free agent, as are first baseman Mike Napoli, shortstop Stephen Drew and catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The team will almost certainly prevent pitcher Jon Lester from becoming a free agent by picking up his $13 million option.


Expect the team to avoid trying to make a big splash on players like they did when they overpaid for Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford. Instead, general manager Ben Cherington will follow up on a strategy that brought in Shane Victorino, Jonny Gomes and Koji Uehara all key parts of this year's title.


Associated Press
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