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Red Sox agree to deal with free-agent catcher Mike Napoli

Napoli, who hit .227 with 24 home runs last season for the Texas Rangers, gets a three-year deal worth $39 million.

December 03, 2012

Adding offense following a disappointing season, the Boston Red Sox have agreed to a $39-million, three-year contract with catcher Mike Napoli, a person familiar with the deal said.

The agreement is subject to Napoli's passing a physical, which will take place later this week, the person said Monday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal was not yet final.

A 31-year-old who also plays first base, Napoli hit .320 with 30 home runs and 75 runs batted in as the Texas Rangers won their second straight American League pennant in 2011, then slumped to a .227 average with 24 homers and 56 RBIs this year as he became a first-time All-Star. His on-base percentage dropped from .416 to .343.

Boston now has four catchers, with Napoli joining Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Ryan Lavarnway and David Ross. Saltalamacchia started 95 games behind the plate last season, with Kelly Shoppach getting 42 starts and Lavarnway 25.

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Former Dodgers first baseman James Loney is headed to Tampa Bay to play for the Rays. Loney, who was traded by the Dodgers to the Boston Red Sox last season, will receive a reported one-year deal for $2 million with another $1 million in incentives.

The San Francisco Giants and free-agent center fielder Angel Pagan agreed to a $40-million, four-year contract. Pagan, 31, batted .288 with eight home runs, 56 RBIs and 15 triples in his first season with the Giants. ... Catcher Geovany Soto is staying with the Texas Rangers, agreeing to a $2.75 million, one-year contract. ... Left-hander Zach Duke agreed to a one-year contract to stay with the Washington Nationals. ... Right-hander Jason Marquis will remain with the San Diego Padres after reaching a $3-million, one-year deal.

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Former New York Yankees owner Jacob Ruppert, longtime umpire Hank O'Day and barehanded catcher Deacon White were elected to the Hall of Fame for their excellence through the first half of the 20th century. The trio was picked by the Hall's pre-integration panel — part of what once was known as the Veterans Committee — and gave the shrine exactly 300 members.

Etc.

Two years after playing for Europe on a winning Ryder Cup team, Ross Fisher of England endured six stressful days at PGA West in La Quinta to earn a PGA Tour card.

In the final Q-school where players could go straight to the PGA Tour, Fisher easily finished among the top 25 to get his card. D.H. Lee of South Korea birdied his last three holes for a 67 to win Q-school, giving him the highest priority ranking for next year and a $50,000 check.

Erik Compton, who has gone through two heart transplants, made it back to the tour by tying for seventh.

Next year Q-school will only provide cards to the secondary Web.com Tour.

The PGA Tour is changing its structure to make it more competitive than ever. The players who failed to reach the FedEx Cup playoffs will meet in a series of four tournaments called "The Finals," and the 25 players who earn the most money from those events will get their cards.

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The NHL Players' Assn. will hold a meeting Tuesday to choose which six players it will send to a negotiating session later in the day with six NHL owners in New York. Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby and Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews reportedly will be part of the players' delegation at the Tuesday session.

The NHL will send owners Rob Burkle of Pittsburgh, Mark Chapman of Winnipeg, Murray Edwards of Calgary, Jeremy Jacobs of Boston, Larry Tanenbaum of Toronto and Jeff Vinik of Tampa Bay. The negotiations won't include NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman or NHLPA Executive Director Donald Fehr, but each side will have counsel and support staff present.

— Helene Elliott

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Former Connecticut men's basketball coach Jim Calhoun said had surgery in May to remove an apparent cancerous growth from his lungs.

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Miami Heat forward LeBron James was selected Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year.

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Forward Alex Morgan won the U.S. Soccer Federation's female athlete of the year award.

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