Red Sox fans should feel insulted by Chaim Bloom’s latest Xander Bogaerts update
On Sunday, it will be a full month since the Boston Red Sox brass sat in front of the media for their end-of-season press conference and reiterated that Xander Bogaerts is their top priority. They said efforts to retain him long-term would begin ‘immediately.’ After an infuriating season, it was the smallest glimmer of hope that this would finally be a new chapter in the book of homegrown stars.
What idiots we were to believe them. And not the fun, 2004 kind of idiots.
With the World Series more than halfway done, the Sox are officially singing a different tune. A painfully familiar tune.
Three days after the Fall Classic concludes, Bogaerts can opt out of his contract and become a free agent for the first time in his ten-year career. Can Sox fans expect a last-minute extension for their unofficial captain or any of the other soon-to-be free agents? Not bloody likely, according to this ownership’s latest man-facing-firing-squad, Chaim Bloom:
"“[That’s] not something I want to handicap. For Xander and everyone, it’s very easy to see fits for a number of these guys on next year’s club, and that’s still the case.”via Boston Globe (subscription required)"
Handicap? Really? Come on. Sox fans have too refined a palate to consume this steaming plate of nonsense Bloom is trying to feed them. They will see right through what the Chief Baseball Officer is attempting to frame as magnanimity.
Better to simply tell the truth: that this organization is once again shoving a beloved, proven talent out the door for no justifiable reason other than their own miserliness and ineptitude.
Latest Chaim Bloom update shows Red Sox mishandling Xander Bogaerts
This should’ve been easy. Bogaerts has made it clear for years that he only wants to play in Boston. Knowing the team-friendly extension he initiated in 2019, he’s not asking for anything outlandish, either. He has four years and $80M remaining on his current deal. Raise the annual salary to $25M and tack on 2-3 more years with lower salaries, cushioned with incentives. He’ll still be more affordable than Trea Turner or any of the other superstar free-agent shortstops coming on the market, and he’s the only one who’s a proven winner in Boston.
It’s one thing to say what Bloom did about players who are actually reaching free agency because their contracts expired. That’s JD Martinez, Nathan Eovaldi – whom Pedro Martinez keeps talking about as if he’s coming back – Michael Wacha, and Rich Hill. In Bogaerts’ case, he has the option to opt out, but it’s only something he’s considering because of how poorly the Sox have handled extension talks with him over the last year. They made him an insulting offer (what else is new?) and then signed Trevor Story. Bogaerts was selfless enough to help them do it, knowing he could be squiring his own replacement. Turns out, Story just wants to play with Bogaerts.
If the Sox wanted to get a deal done with Bogaerts, they would. They’ve had a month. They have the money. One can only assume – based on ample past precedent – that he is willing, and they are not. The fact that they recently made another absurd lowball offer to Rafael Devers doesn’t inspire confidence, either.
Once again, the Red Sox are eschewing the easy, right choice in favor of one that will make them despised and ridiculed. No one who’s paid attention to the way this organization operates with homegrown stars is going to buy what Bloom is selling. And if the Sox handle Bogaerts (and Devers) the way everyone thinks they’re going to, fans shouldn’t buy tickets next year, either.