Dwight Evans finally has a second chance at the Hall of Fame.
The graceful right fielder is one of 10 people on the ballot the Modern Era committee will consider when it votes Dec. 8. The news came Monday, a day after Evans turned 68.
“I’m looking forward to whatever happens,” Evans said. “I’m still trying to take this all in. This is something I cherish.”
Evans was with the Red Sox from 1972-90, hitting .272 with an .842 OPS. He was an eight-time Gold Glove winner with 385 home runs and 1,384 RBIs, a testament to his all-around skills.
Evans was on the Baseball Writers’ Association of America ballot for the first time in 1997 but fell off in 1999 after receiving only 3.6 percent of the vote.
Evans was overshadowed at the time by a number of other outfielders, including longtime Sox teammate Jim Rice.
Rice stayed on the ballot and made it to Cooperstown in 2009. But Evans, until now, didn’t have that chance.
The delay could serve Evans well if the committee voters do their homework.
In the age of advanced statistics, Evans retrospectively shines. His 67.1 WAR is higher than Rice (47.7), Dave Winfield (64.2), Tony Perez (54.0) and, in particular, Harold Baines (38.7), who was elected through the “Today’s Game” committee a year ago.
Baines had an .820 OPS from 1980-2001 with 384 home runs and 1,628 RBIs.
“I hope they look at all those things,” Evans said. “They can measure so much now that we didn’t know about back then.”
From 1980-89, Evans led the majors with 605 extra-base hits, more than Hall of Famers Robin Yount, Eddie Murray, Andre Dawson, and Baines had with more at-bats.
Evans had an .882 OPS during that decade, sixth among his peers and higher than nine Hall of Famers.
“I’m a big believer that you should be judged against the players in your generation,” Evans said. “I’m a student of the history of baseball and how the game has changed over the years. I think that eras and generations are different. That’s how I feel.”
Evans also should benefit from the increased focus on defense this generation.
“I’d like to think I saved a lot of runs,” Evans said. “I won’t want to make my own case or pat myself on the back. But, hey, I’m out there. I think I had a good career when compared to other in my generation. I hope there’s a reward in that.”
The new ballot also includes Steve Garvey, Tommy John, Don Mattingly, Thurman Munson, Dale Murphy, Dave Parker, Ted Simmons, and Lou Whitaker along with the late Marvin Miller, who led the MLB Players Association from 1966-82.
For Garvey, Mattingly, Murphy, and Parker, in particular, Baines’s induction will create hope. But 12 of a possible 16 votes (75 percent) are needed.
The Hall of Fame will not reveal the members of the committee until early next month.
Castillo stays put
Triple A Pawtucket outfielder Rusney Castillo, as you would expect, declined to opt out of the final year of his contract and will collect $13.5 million next season. That will be his final year. Using a since closed-loophole, the Sox outrighted Castillo to the minors in 2016 to keep his salary from counting against MLB’s payroll luxury tax.
Additionally, the Sox outrighted catcher Juan Centeno and he elected free agency. Centeno, 29, spent the majority of the season in Triple A Pawtucket, but did see action in seven games at the big-league level this season where he hit .133.
The Sox’ 40-man roster is down to 34.
In Guadalajara, Mexico, Sox prospect Bobby Dalbec singled in a run and scored another as Team USA beat the Dominican Republic, 10-8, in the Premier12 tourney — an Olympic qualifier — and advance to the Super Round next week in Tokyo.
The Baseball Writers’ Association of America announced the finalists for Rookie of the Year, Manager of the Year, Cy Young Award, and Most Valuable Player honors. No Red Sox players made the cut.
Finalists for AL MVP are the Astros’ Alex Bregman, the A’s Marcus Semien, and the Angels’ Mike Trout. Trout is seeking his third MVP after winning in 2014 and ‘16. He finished second in 2012, ‘13, ‘15, and ‘18.
Nationals third baseman Anthony Rendon, Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger, and Brewers outfielder Christian Yelich are the top three for the NL honor. Yelich won last year’s NL MVP award with 29 of 30 first-place votes.
The AL Cy Young finalists are the Astros’ Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander, and the Rays’ Charlie Morton.
In the NL, Mets ace Jacob deGrom is a finalist for the Cy Young after getting 29 of 30 first-place votes last year. He is competing with Washington’s Max Scherzer, a three-time Cy Young winner, and the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu.
Mets first baseman Pete Alonso, Atlanta righthander Mike Soroka, and San Diego shortstop Fernando Tatís Jr. are finalists for the NL Rookie of the Year, while Houston designated hitter Yordan Álvarez, Tampa Bay second baseman Brandon Lowe, and Baltimore lefthander John Means are the AL’s top candidates.
The Yankees’ Aaron Boone, Minnesota’s Rocco Baldelli, and Tampa Bay’s Kevin Cash are finalists for AL Manager of the Year. In the NL, Atlanta’s Brian Snitker, a finalist to win for the second straight season, is joined by Milwaukee’s Craig Counsell and the Cardinals’ Mike Shildt.
Rookies of the Year are announced Nov. 11, followed by Managers of the Year (Nov. 12), Cy Youngs (Nov. 13), and MVPs (Nov. 14).
Yankees pass on Didi
The Yankees failed to make a $17.8 million qualifying offer to Didi Gregorius and will not receive draft-pick compensation if the free agent shortstop signs with another team. Gregorius, who turns 30 in February, came back from Tommy John surgery in early June and hit .238 with 16 homers and 61 RBIs in 82 games.
Tyler Lyons, who earned a spot on the Yankees’ postseason roster as a lefthanded reliever, refused an outright assignment to Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and elected to become a free agent.
Markakis in, Teheran out
The Braves are bringing back outfielder Nick Markakis in what will likely be a reduced role next season, but Julio Teheran’s long tenure with the team could be over.
Atlanta announced it had re-signed Markakis and catcher Tyler Flowers to $4 million, one-year contracts for 2020 after declining their team options.
Teheran, the first pitcher to make six straight Opening Day starts for Atlanta, also had a club option for 2020. The team turned that down, making the 28-year-old righthander a free agent after completing a $32.4 million, six-year contract.
Atlanta opted against a $12 million option for Teheran in 2020, instead paying a $1 million buyout. The move was not unexpected on the heels of Teheran being initially left off the postseason roster after going 10-11 with a 3.81 ERA.
The Braves also made a $17.8 million qualifying offer to free agent third baseman Josh Donaldson, ensuring they'll receiving at least one compensatory draft pick should he sign elsewhere.
Salazar goes free
The Indians have given up on former All-Star Danny Salazar, whose career has been sidetracked by injuries. Salazar was reinstated from the 60-day disabled list and refused an outright assignment to Triple A Columbus, electing to become a free agent. Salazar, 29 made the AL All-Star team in 2016 before shoulder problems set him back . . . The Angels declined their $14 million contract option for next season on longtime right fielder Kole Calhoun. The 32-year-old outfielder gets a $1 million buyout as part of his $26 million, three-year contract and becomes a free agent for the first time . . . The Twins declined a $7.5 million option on lefthander Martin Pérez and made a $17.8 million qualifying offer to All-Star Jake Odorizzi . . . The Brewers cut $15 million in payroll for next season, trading righthander Chase Anderson to the Blue Jays for prospect Chad Spanberger and declining a $7.5 million option on first baseman Eric Thames . . . Madison Bumgarner received a $17.8 million qualifying offer from the Giants, a move that likely will decrease demand for him in the free agent market. San Francisco’s decision means a team signing Bumgarner would lose at least one pick in next year’s amateur draft as compensation unless a deal is struck after the draft starts in June. Bumgarner, 30, wrapped up a $35.56 million, six-year contract singed in April 2012 that included $12 million club options for both 2018 and ’19 . . . The Pirates exercised their 2020 options on pitcher Chris Archer and center fielder Starling Marte. Archer is scheduled to make $9 million next season and Marte $11.5 million following Pittsburgh’s decisions Monday . . . Elvis Andrus is staying with the Rangers after the shortstop passed up on a second chance to opt out of his contract and become a free agent. Andrus, who just completed his 11th season with the Rangers, has $43 million and three years left on his contract in Texas.