“Mike Napoli played a lot this year and was a huge part of our team,” Cherington said. “We’re making a qualifying offer to him, so we obviously have interest in him returning on a one-year deal for $14.1 million. He’ll have an opportunity to consider that.”
On other topics Monday:
Koji Uehara, who inherited the closer job and was selected the AL championship series MVP, is the leading contender for the job in 2014. The Japanese right-hander, who will turn 39 in the first week of the season, is coming off a season in which he set career-highs with 73 appearances and 74 1-3 innings.
“I think we’re completely comfortable starting next year with Koji as our closer,” Farrell said. “He didn’t leave here with any physical ailments. We went into this spring with the same thought, that we need to be careful with his age and his workload. And he exceeded everything.”
Cherington is content heading into spring training with six candidates for the starting rotation: Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz, John Lackey, Jake Peavy, Felix Doubront and Ryan Dempster. “We could certainly envision a scenario where every one that’s currently under contract is in Fort Myers. And in fact, at this point, that’s what I would expect,” Cherington said. “We’ll see what the offseason brings.”
Second baseman Dustin Pedroia has not yet had surgery on a torn ligament in his left thumb. “As far as I know, there’s been no date or site set for the surgery,” Cherington said. “But it certainly looks like it’s headed in that direction.”
Cherington said no other teams have asked for permission to interview Red Sox coaches for other jobs. Bench coach Torey Lovullo is reportedly a candidate for the managerial job with the Chicago Cubs, who are run by former Red Sox GM Theo Epstein.