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Boggs canonized in Red Sox cap

Wade Boggs will represent the Red Sox in the Hall of Fame.

Boggs, whose election was announced Tuesday, will have a Red Sox cap on his plaque in Cooperstown, Hall of Fame officials announced. The museum does not allow players to choose their caps.

"It's a decision they made, and I'm fine with it," Boggs said.

The Tampa resident spent 11 of his 18 seasons in Boston and won all five of his batting titles there. He also won his only World Series championship with the Yankees in 1996 and finished his career with two seasons with his hometown Devil Rays.

Boggs and fellow inductee Ryne Sandberg also said Pete Rose would be on their lists of candidates to join them in Cooperstown. The two also mentioned sluggers Jim Rice and Andre Dawson and closers Bruce Sutter and Rich Gossage as players worthy of induction.

Rose, the career hits leader, remains on baseball's ineligible list after admitting he bet on games while managing Cincinnati in the late 1980s. Unless commissioner Bud Selig reinstates him by late November, there is no plan by the Hall of Fame to place him on the 2006 ballot, which would be his final chance for consideration by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

"I patterned my game after Pete," Boggs said. "When you look at what he accomplished, he's the hit king. Without him, there's a void in the Hall of Fame. He needs to be there."

Both did a little electioneering for old teammates.

"Jim Rice," Boggs said, "in my opinion, there was not a more feared hitter in baseball. When he walked to the plate and stared at the pitcher, you knew he was going to hit the ball hard and drive in important runs for us."

Sandberg mentioned Dawson, a Cubs teammate.

"Dawson was in the same category as Rice," he said. "Four hundred home runs, Gold Gloves, the ultimate professional and a class act."

JOHNSON DEAL NEARLY COMPLETE: Randy Johnson and the Yankees moved closer to agreement on a two-year contract extension that would allow New York to complete its tentative trade with Arizona.

Yankees officials and agent Alan Nero are discussing a two-year deal worth about $32-million and considering whether to restructure the final season of Johnson's current contract.

ANAHEIM VS. ANGELS: The city of Anaheim, Calif., asked a judge to block the Angels from adding Los Angeles to their name.

The complaint filed in Orange County Superior Court asked for a temporary restraining order against the use of the name "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim." City spokesman John Nicoletti said a judge was expected to rule on the request Friday.

METS: Right-hander Pedro Martinez plans to arrive at his first spring training with New York on the voluntary reporting date. Martinez made a habit of reporting to the Red Sox after the voluntary date but before the mandatory deadline.

PIRATES: The team offered a multiyear deal only to shortstop Jack Wilson among its six remaining arbitration-eligible players.

REDS: Shortstop Anderson Machado hurt his knee while playing winter baseball in Venezuela and is trying to return to the United States for tests to determine the extent of the injury. General manager Dan O'Brien said visa problems were blocking his return.

RED SOX: DH David Ortiz is recovering from a nagging right shoulder injury and hopes to be healthy when spring training starts next month.

TIGERS: The team doesn't expect second baseman Fernando Vina to be healthy enough to start the season and does not consider itself in the running for free-agent centerfielder Carlos Beltran.

TWINS: Manager Ron Gardenhire was given a two-year contract extension through 2007, his reward for leading the team to three AL Central titles in three seasons.

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