- Tim Burke
Assessing the Future of Xander Bogaerts
The Boston Red Sox biggest priority this offseason is to resign Xander Bogaerts. The storylines regarding the contract status of Boston's shortstop loomed large over the 2022 season. The frustration over losing a Hall of Fame caliber talent in Mookie Betts is still fresh in the minds of Red Sox Nation. Losing Xander and Betts within three years would be a Red Sox fan's worst nightmare. On a positive note, there have been numerous reports of the Red Sox working hard to keep Xander in Boston for the foreseeable future. The constant media attention to Xander's future with the organization has been exhausting for media, fans, and Bogaerts himself. Unfortunately, we will not have any answers on Xander Bogaerts' future for quite some time. According to ESPN, Scott Boras asked for a long-term contract for his client in the range of 33-35 million AAV. The Boston Globe reported that the Red Sox would only reach a deal before Bogaerts hit the open market if Scott Boras dictated the terms for a new contract entirely. Yikes.
To make matters worse, we know the Red Sox offered Bogaerts 4 years at 90 million last Spring. That contract would have raised his AAV from 20 million to 22.5 million. According to reports from ESPN, It appears Boras wants a yearly raise of nearly 15 million for his client. Good luck. Bogaerts is a great player, but I have a hard time believing there is a team that would give him that kind of money. I cannot see Bogaerts' new contract playing out the way Scott Boras hopes. The staff over at FanGraphs stated that nobody is sure what to make of Xander Bogaerts' next contract. Four supremely talented shortstops headline this year's Free Agent Class. Out of the four, Bogaerts is the oldest at 30. He is also the weakest defensively and will likely move to third base within the first couple of years of his new contract, which would diminish his value. Given the fact Carlos Correa and Trea Turner are better, younger players Xander will need to wait and see what contracts they will receive in Free Agency before he signs his new deal because there is no way he will do better than those guys. As great as Bogaerts is, the reported asking price is astronomical. If you spend 33-35 million per year on a Shortstop, it better be spent on the best available talent in the Free Agent class, which Bogaerts is far from being. This situation is a brutal wait-and-see game for the Boston Red Sox and their fans. Despite the city of Boston's attachment to Xander Bogaerts, the Red Sox organization is doing the right thing by playing this out. The MLB Free Agency begins at midnight tonight. Let the chaos begin.