It appears there may be some movement in the seemingly never-ending Red Sox-J.D. Martínez stalemate.
According to a new rumor, the Red Sox’ offer to Martinez has crept up to five years, $125 million, up $25 million from a previous offer reported earlier this week. It is unclear whether this was the Red Sox’ actual initial offer, or if this is indeed a counter offer.
The outfielder’s agent, Scott Boras, was initially anticipating a contract paying his client around $30 million annually. However, Boston’s offer of $25 million per year is seemingly the best one on the table at the moment.
The reported offer is comparable to contracts signed by sluggers Josh Hamilton (five years, $125 million in 2013), Ryan Howard (five years, $125 million in 2012) and Yoenis Cespedes (four years, $110 million in 2017).
Martinez belted 45 home runs and drove in 104 runs with a .303 batting average last year with the both the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks. Since becoming a full-time starter in 2014, Martínez has averaged 32 home runs and 88 RBI per season while batting .301.
While Red Sox President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski has kept the negotiations in the shadows thus far, there have been several leaks this week alone.
This could mean one of two things; that an agreement is getting close, or that one of the sides is leaking the details to the media to gain more leverage. Either way, the negotiations are getting serious, and the Red Sox front office is clearly trying to fill the team’s power void before pitchers and catchers report on Feb. 13th.