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20 February 2018, 08:10 | Donald Newman
Power move by the Red Sox
The Associated Press has learned from a person with knowledge of the deal that 40-year-old reliever Joaquin Benoit and the Nationals have agreed in principle to a one-year, $1 million major league contract, pending a physical.
The deal is a five year, $110 million dollar deal, with Martinez netting $50 million in the first two years.
Other than that, though, the roster went almost untouched, with the Red Sox re-signing first baseman Mitch Moreland and utility infielder Eduardo Nunez and not yet adding a player who wasn't part of last year's group.
With many teams adopting "file and trial" strategies, the only players who reached agreements after the January 12 exchange of proposed salaries were Houston outfielder George Springer, Baltimore second baseman Jonathan Schoop, Orioles pitcher Kevin Gausman, Detroit shortstop Jose Iglesias and Pittsburgh reliever Felipe Rivero. His overall season stats included a slash line of.303/.376/.690 with 45 home runs, 104 RBI, 85 runs and a bWAR of 4.1.
During the offseason, Martinez and the Red Sox seemed close to a deal many times but couldn't come to the terms both sides wanted. "JD Martinez is a Red Sox".
Before signing Austin Jackson in late January, the Giants reportedly listed Dyson, 33, atop their list of free agent starting centerfielders with Jon Jay and Cameron Maybin following respectively. Despite winning the AL East a year ago, the Red Sox hit the fewest home runs in the American League last season. The Sox have a big battle coming up if they want to three-peat as AL East champions and make a deep playoff run. His poor grades in defensive metrics may have hurt his value this offseason, but that doesn't figure to be an issue with the Red Sox.
Martinez figues to be the Red Sox' cleanup hitter in 2018. Martinez started a combined 112 games in right field previous year. Martinez won't get the money he wanted, but getting $50 million over two seasons with the option to return to the open market is a good deal for him. Martinez can play first base, he can play the outfield and he can DH.
Speaking to reporters in Fort Myers on Monday, Red Sox owner John Henry and chairman Tom Werner addressed the move by their top competition in the AL East.
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