On Wednesday, the Boston Red Sox agreed to a super deal with one of their All-Stars for the foreseeable future. So how does this make up for the other Red Sox mistakes this offseason?
Busy In Boston
The Boston Red Sox and Rafael Devers have officially agreed to an 11-year, $331 million contract extension. Just 24 hours ago, the two parties agreed to a one-year deal to avoid arbitration. It didn’t take long for the Red Sox to pay Rafael Devers what he was worth. This offseason for the Boston Red Sox has been an absolute whirlwind. The Red Sox have been under scrutiny since letting a few Red Sox greats walk away, most important of them all, Xander Bogaerts. So how does this move ease the tension between the front office and the fans?
The Red Sox’s management proves they can spend money with this extension. Since Chaim Bloom took his role with Boston, guys like Xander Bogaerts, Mookie Betts, Nathan Eovaldi, and JD Martinez have all moved on to other teams, leaving a bad taste in fans’ mouths. However, this Rafael contract is this franchise’s longest and largest contract. It is also the largest-ever contract for a third baseman.
Red Sox Cornerstone
With the extension, Rafael Devers will be the cornerstone in Boston for a long time. Although Rafael plays third base, being that his contract has him playing until he’s 37 years old, down the road, we could see Devers transition into more of a first baseman or a designated hitter to preserve his health for the next 11 years.
For the year, Rafael Devers hit a .295 batting average, a .358 on-base percentage, and a .521 slugging percentage. The .521 slugging percentage ranked 7th in Major League Baseball. Devers also hit 27 home runs and 88 RBIs to go along with his terrific percentages. With this contract, Devers ranks 16th in average annual value (AAV) with $30.09 million per year.
I myself am a Red Sox fan, so I love this signing. I was worried when Bogaerts left if Devers would even want to stay in Boston. Luckily Boston has found their guy for quite a few years. Letting Xander Bogaerts walk was one of the most catastrophic things management could have done to this fan base. Allowing Mookie to walk was one thing; letting Xander walk, a locker room leader since David Ortiz retired, is quite moronic. I digress.
This signing was great for Boston and remarkable for their wallets. Devers can play well enough to become an AL MVP one day; getting him at the 16th-best AAV is an excellent move that the Red Sox fans will appreciate. Baseball season is just around the corner, with pitchers and catchers reporting on Valentine’s Day, February 14th.