This back-and-forth over the top position player available is currently leaning towards Texas
Michael Silverman said Boston had a small chance of bringing in Josh Hamilton. Jim Bowden increased the odds a bit by saying it was down to the Rangers and Red Sox, because really, the Mariners, ha! The latest update on this story that won't end until the ink is dried comes from Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, who reports that the Rangers are willing to go that fourth year that, to this point, no one else has been willing to hand out:
Boston was one of the clubs looking at three years for Hamilton, and it's unknown if they will push it to four if that's enough to bring him from Texas. But, given the risks involved even when considering his immense talent, three years might be as far as anyone should want to go with Hamilton. The Rangers, given they're aware of what goes into Hamilton, are the exception if there is one, so it only makes sense they would be the ones to break through the three-year ceiling, now that they know what everyone else's hand is.
Progress on negotiations isn't the same thing as done, so until Josh Hamilton officially has a press conference scheduled, it's hard to believe this is the final word on the issue.
Should Hamilton drop off of Boston's radar, there are still outfield options remaining, specifically in Nick Swisher and Shane Victorino -- plus whoever is available in a trade -- so it's not the end of the world should they miss the opportunity to spend a lot of money on one player.