UPDATE (April 1, 1:06 p.m. ET): The Boston Red Sox announced Monday they've officially signed Xander Bogaerts to a six-year contract extension through 2025 with a vesting option for 2026.
The #RedSox today signed shortstop Xander Bogaerts to a six-year contract extension that spans the 2020-2025 seasons, with a vesting option for the 2026 season.— Red Sox (@RedSox) April 1, 2019
ORIGINAL STORY: The Boston Red Sox recently locked up a cornerstone player when they signed starting pitcher Chris Sale to a five-year contract extension, and they now have done the same with shortstop Xander Bogaerts .
ESPN's Jeff Passan reported Sunday night that Boston and Bogaerts are finalizing a huge contract extension.
Final details on Xander Bogaerts' deal with Boston, which was first reported as close by @EvanDrellich, are being hammered out. It will begin this season. There will be an opt-out. Bogaerts will be locked up long-term, though, taking another big name off the market next winter.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) April 1, 2019
The extension is worth $120 million and begins in 2020. So, including his 2019 salary of $12 million, Bogaerts is signed for the next seven years at $132 million.
Confirmed: The #RedSox are finalizing a six-year, $120 million contract extension for Xander Bogaerts, taking yet another potential free agent off the market. Bogaerts already is earning $12 million this year, so new deal starts in 2020. @EvanDrellich and @JeffPassan 1st on news— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) April 1, 2019
Extending Bogaerts makes a lot of sense for the Red Sox. He's one of the best hitting shortstops in baseball, his defense is very good and he's proven to be durable. The 26-year-old led all AL shortstops in RBIs, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and doubles last season. He also ranked third in batting average and third in walks among all AL shortstops in 2018.
Bogaerts is 3-for-16 with two walks and two runs scored through the first four games of 2019.
Locking up Bogaerts long-term gives the Red Sox a clearer picture of their financial future. Bogaerts was able to hit unrestricted free agency after this season and would have been one of the top non-pitchers available.
Getting him signed might allow the Red Sox to focus more time and effort on keeping superstar outfielder Mookie Betts in Boston for the foreseeable future. The reigning AL MVP can hit free agency after the 2020 season and likely will receive a gargantuan contract from whichever teams signs him.
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