Shortstop Xander Bogaerts and third baseman Rafael Devers have been in a holding pattern waiting for new contracts — despite their overwhelming importance to the Boston Red Sox.
Bogaerts wanted compensation similar to several of the league’s top shortstops (Carlos Correa, $35.1M/YR; Corey Seager, $32.5M) and rejected an even lower extension this offseason.
- Bogaerts’ five-year, $132M deal from 2019 ranks 48th in MLB by AAV ($20M) — but includes a player opt-out after this season.
- The 25-year-old Devers is playing on an $11.2M salary in his second of three arbitration years.
- Both were crucial to Boston’s World Series win in 2018 and have four All-Star appearances between them.
The offseason acquisition of SS Trevor Story further complicates things: He’s a better fielder than Bogaerts, and his six-year, $140 million contract pushed the Sox over the luxury tax threshold for 2022.
As such, Boston could be looking at a similar situation to that of Mookie Betts, whom the Red Sox notoriously traded to the Dodgers — and who then signed a record $365 million deal.