Red Sox

Red Sox Notebook: Sox insist they’ve done their homework on Alex Verdugo’s past

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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Alex Verdugo was the primary piece coming back to the Red Sox in exchange for Mookie Betts and David Price. Though the trade took six days to complete and had two iterations -- one with a third team, one without -- Verdugo was always the centerpiece.

But the outfielder also comes with some considerable baggage attached.

For one thing, coaches and teammates with the Dodgers had to reprimand Verdugo for his sometimes indifferent attitude and poor work habits.

Far more seriously, Verdugo, while in the minor leagues, was at one point in the same Arizona hotel room where a sexual assault is alleged to have taken place. Some reports had Verdugo present at the time of the assault; others indicate that it happened after he left.

Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom insisted that the Red Sox did their due diligence on the matter.

"I don't think it would be appropriate for us to into a ton of detail on that specific incident,'' said Bloom, in announcing the oft-delayed, reconfigured deal Monday night. "The due diligence process there was extensive. Obviously, that's a topic you take very seriously, as everybody should.

"We researched it very thoroughly. At the end of the day, we would not have moved forward with the acquisition if we had found anything disqualifying.''

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Bloom had nothing to offer on the team's search for a new manager to replace Alex Cora, who mutually agreed with the team to step down last month after he was implicated in the Houston Astros' 2017 sign-stealing scandal.

"No news on that front. We're hoping to have news on that front soon, but nothing on that right now,'' said Bloom.

The Boston Globe has reported that the team intends to promote bench coach Ron Roenicke to the role of manager once Major League Baseball releases the results of its investigation of the Red Sox' own sign-stealing scandal in 2018. Reportedly, the Sox want to make sure that Roenicke isn't implicated in the report.

But Bloom would not publicly tie the managerial announcement to the release of MLB's findings.

"Again just what I said -- until the (hiring) process is done, we're not going to have any comment on it,'' he said.

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Connor Wong was in Red Sox camp Monday and both Jeter Downs and Verdugo are expected Tuesday.

Verdugo is on the team's 40-man roster. Downs and Wong are not, but both will take part in major league spring training as invitees.