Mookie Betts and the Boston Red Sox have avoided an arbitration hearing.
The All-Star outfielder agreed to a one-year, $27 million contract with the Red Sox on Friday prior to MLB's arbitration deadline, ESPN's Jeff Passan reported Friday.
Betts' deal is a new record for an arbitration-eligible player, breaking Nolan Arenado's record $26 million contract with the Colorado Rockies.
The contract still is slightly under projection, though; MLBTradeRumors.com predicted Betts would get $27.7 million on his new deal, while most estimates pegged him in the $27-$30 million range.
Gut reaction to Mookie's $27 million settlement -- even though it's a record, it feels like he could've gotten more. If nothing else, suggests he wasn't looking to stick it to team.— John Tomase (@jtomase) January 10, 2020
Betts' contract does include a nice extra perk, however, according to the New York Post's Joel Sherman.
Boston also agreed to a one-year, $11 million contract with outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. to avoid arbitration Friday, per Passan.
To clarify, these deals don't preclude the Red Sox from trading either Betts or Bradley -- who both will become unrestricted free agents in 2021 -- between now and the July 31 MLB trade deadline.
In fact, finalizing both players' contracts could help Boston get the ball rolling on a potential trade now that their value is set.
Boston has a stated goal of getting under the luxury tax in 2020, and Betts would be the Red Sox' third-highest-paid player behind David Price ($32 million) and Chris Sale ($30 million).