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Thursday, October 31, 2013
Free agent-to-be Napoli wants to stay

By Tony Lee, Special to ESPNBoston.com

Mike Napoli
Mike Napoli hits an RBI single in the fourth inning of Game 6.
BOSTON -- Mike Napoli is set to become a free agent soon. The Boston Red Sox first baseman hopes to remain put.

"I want to be here. I love this place," Napoli said during Boston's World Series celebration Wednesday night at Fenway Park.

Napoli was signed to a one-year deal with the Sox after a drawn-out negotiation that saw a hip issue wipe away a reported three-year, $39 million deal. He proved to the organization that the hip was not a problem, driving in a career-high 92 runs in 139 games while playing an admirable first base in his first full season at the position.

Although he did not receive the lucrative long-term deal, Napoli feels he found a home.

"They've treated me so good here, the way they've taken care of me has been unbelievable," he said. "When the time comes I'm pretty sure we're going to have conversations. I hope to be back here next year."