The next domino has fallen.
After the most stagnant free-agent market we've possibly ever seen, we've had some movement in recent weeks. The latest came out of Boston after the Red Sox reportedly inked slugger J.D. Martinez to a long-term contract.
We didn't know the details at first, but the news has slowly leaked, and it's a favorable deal for Boston.
The #Redsox stuck to their guns, knowing they didn’t have to bid against themselves, in giving JD Martinez 5-year, $110 million deal— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) February 19, 2018
That's not bad at all, considering Martinez and his agent, Scott Boras, were seeking $200 million at the beginning of the offseason. Now, he'll have an average annual salary of $21 million, which is more than reasonable for a slugger of Martinez's caliber.
However, the deal is reportedly front-loaded because the former Tiger and D-Back has an opt out clause after two years.
Either way, the Red Sox are getting what they wanted. They aren't committing long-term to an injury-prone player in his 30s; instead, they're paying a lot in the short term with hopes that he exceeds expectations, gets the Sox deep into the postseason, and opts out when the time comes.
JD Martinez will have 2 opt-outs in his 5-year deal. deal frontloaded (50M 1st 2 yrs). 110M total.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 19, 2018
That, of course, is the perfect scenario. The Sox will look like geniuses if they can win a World Series in this two-year window and save money immediately after.
That's the dream, but then again, this is the unpredictable world of Major League Baseball.