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Red Sox offer Pablo Sandoval $95 million, 'may be in lead'

The Red Sox might be the favorites for Pablo Sandoval at the moment because of their reported offer.

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The moment we've been waiting for is now here, as the Red Sox have finally made an offer to free agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval, one with a set dollar figure attached to it. The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo is reporting that the Sox submitted a five-year, $95 million option to Sandoval, and that this contract very well may have allowed them to pull ahead in the race for Panda.

According to Cafardo, the Padres and Sandoval's former team, the Giants, have also given their offers to Sandoval after meeting with him this offseason. It's unclear what their offers are for, or whether they are for longer than five years or include an option to make them that way, but Cafardo's source believes Boston's is the one that's "in the lead" at present.

Sandoval will very likely take this offer back to at least the Giants to see if they'll match it or improve upon it, but don't expect anything long or drawn out here: all indications are that Sandoval wants to have his home picked out, whether it's new or old, very soon. That could be by the end of this weekend, or the end of this week, but everything seems to be pointing towards Sandoval being one of the first real dominos of the offseason that will help set the market for others like Chase Headley.

Should Sandoval sign somewhere besides the Red Sox, Boston would almost certainly ramp up their efforts to reel in Headley, because he's the last major free agent for third base unless you want to count Hanley Ramirez. It's unclear if the Red Sox do.