Red Sox: 3 reasons why J.D. Martinez didn’t opt-out to test free agency
Martinez is comfortable playing for the Red Sox
While plenty of teams with money to burn would have interest in adding his veteran presence to their young core, Martinez should be focused contending teams at this stage of his career. Why go looking for a contender in free agency when he’s already a part of one in Boston?
The Red Sox recovered from a dismal 2020 season to make a surprising run to the ALCS. With a few tweaks, this roster is capable of contending for a World Series title. Boston has also greatly improved their minor league system over the past two years, stocking the farm with impact talent that should arrive in the near future and creating a bright long-term outlook.
Boston is a far more desirable destination than it appeared to be a year ago. Martinez has formed a bond with his teammates, has a solid relationship with manager Alex Cora and has been embraced by the fan base.
Martinez has made a home for himself here and might not be eager to pack up and leave it behind for a new city. It’s uncertain how many years he would be offered on a new deal and at this stage of his career, he might not be interested in hopping around for short-term stints with other teams.
He could have rolled the dice that a more lucrative offer was out there but it’s unclear which AL contenders have a vacant spot for a DH in their lineup and money to spend. There might not be a better landing spot for him than Boston. With all the lingering questions that come with venturing into free agency, Martinez was better off with the security of a spot he finds familiar.