Red Sox

Red Sox

This time Dave Dombrowski means it: The Boston Red Sox are done handing out contract extensions in the 2019 season.

That was the Red Sox president of baseball operations' message Monday after locking up Xander Bogaerts for the next six years, a move that followed a five-year extension for ace Chris Sale.

Per MLB Network's Jon Heyman, this is the breakdown of Bogaerts' contract extension, which includes an opt-out after the 2022 season but could keep the shortstop in Boston until 2026:

Retaining Bogaerts at $20 million per year is good value for the Red Sox, who haven't employed a shortstop of his caliber since Nomar Garciaparra.

But after committing $30 million per year to Sale, the money is starting to add up in Boston. As of now, the Red Sox have nearly $100 million committed to just four players in 2020:

-- SP David Price: $32 million
-- SP Chris Sale: $30 million
-- SS Xander Bogaerts: $20 million
-- SP Nathan Eovaldi: $17 million

The next big domino to fall is designated hitter J.D. Martinez, who has an opt-out after this season and may explore free agency with a contract extension reportedly off the table.


If the Red Sox can pick up Martinez's option, that's another $23.75 million on the books for 2020, which would add up to $122.75 million for Martinez and the four players above. That's more than half Boston's 2019 payroll ($237 million) committed to just five players.

The Red Sox will have some extra cash to work with next year: Pablo Sandoval's albatross of a contract ($18.05 million against Boston's cap in 2019) can come off the books in 2020 thanks to a $5 million buyout.

But they'll have to spend it wisely, for one primary reason: Mookie Betts. The reigning American League MVP hits free agency in 2021 and could command nearly $40 million per year.

The Sox have said they want to keep Betts around, but if Martinez re-signs, that same group of five will still be under contract in 2021. Can Boston afford to spend upwards of $160 million on six players while filling out a serviceable MLB roster?

They'll probably try, and they can cut corners elsewhere: Rick Porcello hits free agency after this season and may not come back if he seeks the $21.2 million per year he's earning now, while young stars Andrew Benintendi and Rafael Devers still are on low-cost rookie contracts.

None of this is to say the Red Sox shouldn't have extended Bogaerts, who provides consistency at a position where Boston has historically lacked it. But their big spending on Sale and Bogaerts could make things a bit trickier over the next two offseasons.

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