Boston Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox have landed their much-needed middle-of-the-order bat, signing free-agent slugger J.D. Martinez to a five-year deal worth $110 million.

FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman and others reported on Monday that the Red Sox were nearing a deal with Martinez. Jon Morosi later tweeted the details of the deal, which includes a chance to opt out after two years. Finally, ESPN’s Pedro Gomez tweeted that the deal is official.

And of course, the Red Sox themselves ostensibly confirmed the deal on Twitter:

Red Sox Sign JD Martinez: What Are They Getting?

Martinez, 30, batted .303 with 45 home runs and 104 RBIs in 2017, despite playing in just 119 games between the Tigers and Diamondbacks. He’s posted 162-game averages of 40 homers and 110 RBIs over the past four seasons. So when healthy, he will certainly provide the Red Sox with legitimate power in the middle of the lineup, where he will likely immediately slide into the cleanup spot.

But the concern with Martinez, ultimately, is his health. He’s averaged just 130 games played over the past four seasons and missed the first six weeks of 2017 with a foot sprain. The other concern is whether he can handle the scrutiny and intensity of the market in Boston, where he will immediately be under a microscope after some public disputes over his contract demands. For what it’s worth, Martinez’s agent, Scott Boras, denied that Martinez was “fed up” or angry in any way with the Red Sox over their negotiations.

Still, the Red Sox desperately needed power in their lineup and Martinez will provide plenty of it when he’s in there. And the deal isn’t necessarily a long-term commitment, considering Martinez can opt out after two years if he so desires. Contractually, it’s a win for the Sox, considering the initial ask was for seven years and $210 million.

— By Matt Dolloff,

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at