David Price suggests slumping Red Sox could trade stars in drastic fire sale
By Sean Penney
The Red Sox could be reluctantly persuaded into trading Martinez if they find themselves out of playoff contention in July. Martinez has three years and nearly $62.5 million remaining on his contract but has an opt-out clause he could exercise after this season, essentially making him an impending free agent. If there’s any hesitance by the front office to give him a longer, more lucrative deal when he’s 32 years old, trading him during the season is a scenario they have to explore if they fall out of the playoff hunt.
Price would be a bit harder to move with three years and $96 million remaining on his deal. There simply aren’t many teams that can afford to take on that contract. The lefty has been the best pitcher in an otherwise woeful Red Sox rotation this season and he finally got the postseason monkey off his back with a spectacular World Series performance. Boston would have to swallow some of that money but contending teams may be willing to deal a hefty package for a pitcher of his caliber.
Between trading Martinez and Price, Boston could obtain an impressive bundle of prospects to restock a farm system that, as Price pointed out, is ranked last by Baseball America. They could also shed a significant amount of payroll to lower their luxury tax bill and potentially duck the tax altogether next season. Resetting the tax penalties would create more financial flexibility to lock up their young core and still find room to add quality talent in free agency in 2021.