Red Sox make Napoli re-signing official

The Sports NetworkDecember 12, 2013 

Boston, MA ( - The defending World Series champion Boston Red Sox formally announced they have brought back first baseman Mike Napoli on a two-year contract Thursday after the postseason hero passed a physical.

The Red Sox declined to disclose financial terms, though previous reports indicated the deal to be worth $32 million.

Signed to an incentive-laden one-year pact by Boston last offseason, Napoli proved to be worth the gamble by playing an instrumental role in the Red Sox' latest championship run. The converted catcher finished second on the club in home runs (23) and RBI (92) while batting .259 in 139 regular-season contests, then went 6-for-20 with a pair of homers to help Boston oust the Detroit Tigers in the American League Championship Series.

Napoli's biggest homer came in Game 3 of the ALCS, a solo shot off Justin Verlander that staked the Red Sox to a 1-0 win and a 2-1 series lead.

The 32-year-old also tied for the major league lead with three grand slams in 2013, while his 4.59 pitches per plate appearance was the most in baseball.

Over eight seasons in the majors, Napoli has hit .259 with 169 homers and 472 RBI while reaching the 20-homer mark in each of the past six years.

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