November 2, 2013

Major League Notebook: Sox, fans ready to celebrate with parade

The Associated Press

BOSTON — The city prepared Friday for a World Series parade that’s expected to draw hundreds of thousands of Boston Red Sox fans to thank the team for a remarkable season.

The duck boat parade is set to begin at 10 a.m. Saturday when the players will climb aboard 24 amphibious vehicles at Fenway Park, then travel through the city and finally go on to the Charles River.

The parade route will be the one used in 2004, when the Red Sox won their first World Series title in 86 years. It will travel down Boylston Street, where in April two bombs killed three people and injured more than 260 during the Boston Marathon.

Security will be tight during the event, with extra police on hand throughout the day and random searches of backpacks along the parade route.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority plans to run extra trains and subways at a rush-hour level to accommodate the crowds. MBTA officials said they expect to provide two million rides on commuter rail, subways and buses.

The Red Sox defeated the St. Louis Cardinals 6-1 at Fenway Park on Wednesday to take the best-of-seven series in six games, an unlikely success for a team that finished in last place last year.

Organizers said they decided to hold the parade Saturday so more fans, particularly families with children, could attend.

Red Sox officials expect most, if not all, players to attend.

David Ortiz and Shane Victorino will shave their beards Monday for charity.

Boston exercised its $13 million option on left-hander Jon Lester. 

YANKEES: Shortstop Derek Jeter, 39, agreed to a $12 million, one-year contract.

The deal replaces a $9.5 million player option. Jeter was limited to 17 games this year after breaking his ankle in the 2012 AL Championship Series opener against Detroit. 

RANGERS: Closer Joe Nathan is a free agent after declining a $9 million contract option.

Nathan, who had indicated he wants a multiyear deal, was able to opt out of the deal after making 67 appearances this season. By declining the option, Nathan also gave up a $750,000 buyout. 

MARINERS: Seattle declined options on outfielder Franklin Gutierrez and left-hander Joe Saunders.

Gutierrez and Saunders each get $500,000 buyouts. Both players originally signed deals with $7.5 million options, and Saunders’ price escalated to $7.9 million based on 32 starts and 180 innings pitched. 

ASTROS: Houston claimed reliever Darin Downs, 28, off waivers from Detroit and added him to the 40-man roster.

Downs appeared in 29 games with a 4.84 ERA last season with the Tigers. 

WHITE SOX: Chicago outrighted right-handed pitcher Simon Castro to Triple-A Charlotte.

Castro was 0-1 with a 2.70 ERA in four games with the White Sox last season. He went 3-7 with a 5.83 ERA over 27 appearances (12 starts) with Charlotte. 

ATHLETICS: Oakland exercised its $7.5 million club option for center fielder Coco Crisp.

A switch hitter and speedy leadoff man, Crisp hit a career-high 22 home runs in the leadoff spot. 

TIGERS: Detroit declined its $3.25 million option on reliever Jose Veras.

Veras was acquired from Houston in a midseason trade. He went 0-5 with a 3.02 ERA in 67 appearances with the Astros and Tigers this year, but Detroit’s bullpen was still a problem in an AL Championship Series loss to Boston.

INDIANS: Starter Ubaldo Jimenez is a free agent after the club exercised his $8 million club option for next season and he declined it.

Jimenez bounced back from a 17-loss season to go 13-9. 

BLUE JAYS: Closer Casey Janssen, first baseman Adam Lind and infielder Mark DeRosa will return next season. 

PIRATES: Left-hander Wandy Rodriguez exercised his $13 million player option for 2014. 

DIAMONDBACKS: Arizona hired Dave McKay as first-base coach and moved Glenn Sherlock to third-base coach and Turner Ward to hitting coach. 

CUBS: Brad Ausmus, a former catcher, was interviewed for the manager’s job. 

METS: The team declined a $25 million option on injured pitcher Johan Santana and will pay him a $5.5 million buyout. 

EXPANDED INSTANT replay will be given a test next week by Major League Baseball at the Arizona Fall League.

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