The process of remaking the Red Sox [team stats] roster might begin with a pair of familiar faces.

Before last night's season finale at Yankee Stadium, general manager Ben Cherington said he has had dialogue with designated hitter David Ortiz [stats] and right fielder Cody Ross about returning next season. Ortiz and Ross are eligible for free agency, and both figure to seek multiyear contracts after playing on one-year deals this season.

"David is someone that we feel strongly about bringing back, and we're trying to figure out a way to do that," Cherington said. "Cody fit in well and had a good year. It's an area of need going forward."

Already the Red Sox' longest-tenured player and their last link to the 2004 World Series champions, Ortiz expressed a desire to finish his career with the team. He was a free agent last year, too, but he accepted arbitration and settled on a one-year, $14.58 million contract.

Ortiz was the Sox' lone All-Star, and even though he played only one game after July 16 because of a strained right Achilles that he said likely will be fully healed within the month, he still ranked second on the team with 23 homers, tied for fourth with 60 RBI and first with a 1.026 on-base plus slugging percentage, his best since 2007.

In his absence, Ortiz' value was never more evident. Without him, the offense lacked a credible power threat.