After working out a trade for Adrian Gonzalez yesterday, the Boston Red Sox were given a deadline of 2 p.m. on Dec. 5 to work out an extension with Gonzalez, which they have failed to do, according to a source.

It’s widely believed Gonzalez is looking for a contract similar to the eight-year, $180 million deal Mark Teixeira received from the New York Yankees prior to the 2009 season.

The San Diego Padres and Boston Red Sox can still work out a deal involving Gonzalez, but the current one is over. The Padres’ package of prospects would be much better if Gonzalez were to sign an extension. 

Gonzalez’s current contract is for the 2011 season only, at the small price of $6.3 million.

The Red Sox have already let star catcher Victor Martinez sign with the Detroit Tigers as a free agent, and are unlikely to sign their own free agent third baseman Adrian Beltre. 

Other Red Sox targets this winter are outfielders Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth, but Gonzalez has been their priority since the 2009 trade deadline.

After failing to make the playoffs in 2010 for the first time since 2006, Red Sox fans have expected general manager Theo Epstein to make a major splash this offseason in the trade and free agent market. 

After letting Martinez walk, and now failing to obtain Gonzalez (for now), Epstein has his work cut out for him. The Red Sox still need to remake their bullpen from last season, which was arguably the team’s biggest weakness last year.

Padres general manager Jed Hoyer and assistant general manager Jason McLeod have both recently worked in the Red Sox organization, and are very familiar with the talent level in the Boston minor league system.

The Red Sox still are the favorites to land Gonzalez, but the failure to lock him up now doesn’t help.

After failing to sign Mark Teixeira in 2008 when they appeared to be the favorites to sign him, the Red Sox watched their arch rivals, the New York Yankees, sign the first baseman.

Boston cannot afford to let Adrian Gonzalez go to another team, and certainly not the Yankees. The Red Sox do not have a young, power-hitting bat in their lineup. 

With the Angels looking like the favorites to sign Carl Crawford, and Jayson Werth reminding fans too much of current Red Sox outfielder J.D. Drew, a trade for Gonzalez is the move the Red Sox have to make before the 2011 season arrives.

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