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David Ross choosing between Red Sox, Padres, Cubs

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Is a return to Boston in store for the veteran catcher?

Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

The Red Sox are one of three teams being considered by free agent catcher David Ross, with the Padres and Cubs also in the race according to Rob Bradford.

Ross will be 38 to start 2015, but even between that and two years of .hitting just .197/.276/.374 with the Red Sox, the veteran backstop is still something of a commodity in a catching-starved market. Enough so that he has the option of three teams that each seem ready to contend in 2015.

Ross' appeal has a lot more to do with his work behind the plate than at it, of course. He has a reputation as one of the better defenders in the league--a talent that earned him a starting spot with the Red Sox in the 2013 World Series when Jon Lester took the mound. It's likely that connection that has Chicago in the mix, and perhaps even as favorites.

For the Red Sox, Ross would be a strong mentor for Christian Vazquez as he takes over a starting roll for Boston. But with Vazquez already a fantastic defensive catcher, there might be less to learn from Ross than one would expect for a 24 year old getting ready to play his first full season in the majors.

With that in mind, the Red Sox might be better off parting ways with Ross and finding a different backup who can hit a little, particularly from the left side of the plate. Maybe we're not looking at a platoon either way given Vazquez' defensive chops, but having someone who can come in when the Red Sox absolutely must turn the lineup over late in a close game would seem ideal.

Still, when it comes to a backup, a team can certainly do worse than David Ross.