Red Sox, call the Mets!

Last week, Alex Speier, who covers the Red Sox for WEEI Sports, said the Mets would “certainly entertain” offers for Carlos Beltran.

Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald also mentioned that he expects the Red Sox to look at Beltran, as well as Dodgers OF Matt Kemp and Rays OF B.J. Upton, in addition to exploring the free agent market for an outfielder.

According to Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com, American League teams in search of an OF-DH, like the Rangers and White Sox, could also have interest in Beltran.

However, he adds, “To trade Beltran, the Mets would need to assume a significant portion of his $18.5 million salary for 2011.”

Similarly, as the Red Sox shop Jonathan Papelbon, Jon Heyman of SI.com says they will need to pay a portion of his expected arbitration money in order to deal him, which might be why his market is very weak right now.

According to Sean McAdam of CSNNE, Papelbon will be seeking $11.5 million in arbitration, for what will be his final year under contract before becoming a free agent.

Last week, while on WFAN, Heyman said, though the Red Sox like Beltran, he does not believe they will be interested in swapping him for Papelbon.

Also speaking of money, last month, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe said there could be significant interest in Daisuke Matsuzaka this off season, though interested teams would likely ask the Red Sox to pick up a substantial portion of the two years and $20 million left on his deal.

By the way, McAdam also says six teams are interested in acquiring Sox SS Marco Scutaro, who the team could use to acquire help in the bullpen.

The 34-year-old Scutaro, who has played 322 games at second base in his career, is due $5 million in the final year of his contract next season.

OK, so, that’s A LOT of over overlap.  I’m not saying the Mets and Red Sox will connect on a deal, but it sure reads like there is a framework that should be explored.