Eric Hosmer’s player option for 2023 might make Red Sox regret trade
When Eric Hosmer signed his 8-year, $144M contract with the San Diego Padres ahead of the 2018 season, it was the richest contract they’d ever given out.
Five years later, they were so desperate to unload him that they agreed to send him to the Red Sox at the 2022 trade deadline but still pay down the remainder of his deal and send a pair of prospects. At the time, it looked like a savvy move; the Sox gave up one prospect and got an excellent defender and two minor leaguers basically for free.
But the front office may end up regretting this because it’s hard to see Hosmer opting out now; he’s no longer the 4-time Gold Glove first baseman he was back in his Kansas City days, and he stands to earn about $40M from the Padres over the next three years, plus the major-league minimum from the Sox. He’s sitting pretty in Boston.
There’s also a new added wrinkle. The Boston Globe (subscription required) reported this week that Hosmer’s contract includes a provision that if the Padres were to trade the veteran infielder, it would trigger full no-trade protection for the remainder of the contract. So, if the Sox want to trade him, he’ll have to agree. He already vetoed a trade to the rebuilding Washington Nationals at this summer’s deadline, which is how he ended up here. He’s not likely to approve trades to most destinations.