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Red Sox sign Garrett Whitlock to 4-year, $18.75M deal with 2 club options

Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 8: Garrett Whitlock #72 of the Boston Red Sox delivers during the sixth inning of the 2022 Major League Baseball Opening Day game against the New York Yankees on April 8, 2022 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK -- Right-hander Garrett Whitlock and the Boston Red Sox agreed to a four-year, $18.75 million contract covering 2023-26, a deal with two club options and escalators that could increase the total to $44.5 million over six seasons.

The agreement was announced by chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom before Boston played the finale of a three-game series against the rival New York Yankees.

Whitlock had agreed last month to a one-year contract paying $720,000 while in the major leagues and $285,250 while in the minors.

The new deal includes a $1 million signing bonus, $1 million in 2023, $3.25 million in 2024, $5.25 million in 2025 and $7.25 million in 2026. Boston has an $8.25 million club option for 2027 with a $1 million buyout and a $10.5 million option for 2028 with a $500,000 buyout.

The options have up to $4 million each in esclators for innings and awards, such as Cy Young Award and Mariano Rivera/Trevor Hoffman reliever of the year. Whitlock remains eligible for the new $50 million bonus pool for pre-arbitration-eligible players.

The Red Sox poached Whitlock from the Yankees in the winter meeting draft ahead of the 2021 season. A starter in the minors, the 25-year-old Whitlock moved to the bullpen and led all Boston pitchers with a 1.96 ERA over 73 1/3 innings. He was 8-4 with 81 strikeouts and 17 walks while frequently pitching multiple innings per appearance.

Among 30 rookies who pitched at least 70 innings last year, Whitlock ranked first in ERA, second in WHIP at 1.10, and third in opponent OPS at .631.

Whitlock allowed a run over 2 1/3 innings in relief on opening day against New York, striking out four and allowing a homer to DJ LeMahieu in a 6-5 defeat.