Rafael Devers and the Red Sox aren’t close on an extension
As we enter the final hours of the current CBA, players and teams are making deals left and right to secure their futures for 2022. The Red Sox have been relatively quiet beyond adding some depth pieces to shore up some weaknesses. One thing that fans have been clamoring for from the club is an extension for Rafael Devers, but talks haven’t gotten anywhere in the weeks since the season ended.
It’s a no-brainer that the Red Sox and Chaim Bloom would want to keep Devers in Boston for as long as humanly possible. And from everything that the slugger has said in recent memory would make one believe that the feeling is mutual. However, it feels like we have a scenario where the two sides clearly like each other but just can’t seem to connect at the right time.
Chris Cotillo of Masslive.com reported earlier today that there hasn’t been an inch of progress in talks since the season concluded. Raffy is in his second round of arbitration and is a lock to be tendered a contract by tonight’s 8 p.m. deadline.
The winter is still young though and both sides are more than likely awaiting the terms of the new CBA. Cotillo goes on to share similar thoughts and that we may see something happen once the dust settles. I agree with him in the sense that once we get into spring training and Opening Day gets closer on the calendar, Chaim Bloom and his squad may press harder to get something on paper.
I’ve seen plenty of chatter from Red Sox Nation over the last few days with the lockout looming filled with frustration over the lack of a new deal for Devers. While I can understand the desire for the team to ink one of their superstars for the foreseeable future, I doubt he wants to put pen to paper before we learn the ins and outs of the new CBA. It’s not as if he’s a free agent or even soon to be one, he’s under control through the 2023 season.
I’ve also seen plenty of folks try and relate Raffy’s scenario to that of Mookie Betts. Yeah, both are wildly talented but they’re two very different people. Mookie never hid his desire to test free agency and while he may have signed with Los Angeles relatively quick, that was the perfect storm for him. Plenty of years, tons of cash, and the allure of Hollywood.
Devers on the other hand has been pretty clear that he loves playing for the Red Sox and is very happy with the organization. When I think about the relationship between the Red Sox and Big Scoops I look no further than this past season when he was mic’d up around the batting cage. In an honest and open moment, he let the world know what was in his heart.
"“They pay me good, I play baseball, and I hit homers.”"
It doesn’t get more wholesome than that and I think it totally encapsulates his mindset when it comes to the game. Some view it as a business and when the time comes I’m sure he will as well, but for now, he’s happy to make money and smash bombs. I also believe that having Xander Bogaerts as his mentor in the organization will do wonders for his career as he has one of the most professional players in the game to learn from. Both on and off the field.
I fully expect an extension to come Rafael’s way once we get past the mess that is the labor stoppage. As soon as Chaim can get back to work on crafting this roster it would be hard to believe that locking Raffy up for his prime isn’t near the top of his list. Bloom has some interesting waters to navigate as an extension for Carita this winter could only help his cause when it comes to negotiating with Xander next winter.
Bogey can opt-out after the 2022 season and from everything we’ve heard that is the most likely outcome. The thing is, it looks as if he’s going to do so in order to get a better deal with the Red Sox and finish out his career with the club that gave him his opportunity. Having his best friend and probably the person he’s closest to on this team here for the long-term only makes that decision easier for him.
This offseason has seen the shortstop market skyrocket and it’ll set the tone for Bogey, but we know he’s a club guy and may not push the boundaries too much. Those talks all start with what the Red Sox achieve with Devers this winter as it’ll be a one-two punch for the front office.
Back to the matter at hand, and that’s Rafael Devers. The star third baseman had one of his best seasons to date by blasting a career-high 38 homers and near career-high 113 RBI. He tallied a .279/.352/.538 line with 37 doubles and 101 runs scored. He has a fat contract coming his way, the fans are just going to have to wait a little bit longer. Don’t worry Red Sox Nation, Raffy is going to be earning those scoops at Fenway Park for a long long time.