Boston Red Sox

By Matt McCarthy,

The Red Sox better be prepared to open their checkbook if they want to keep Mookie Betts in Boston long-term.

With two seasons left until Betts hits free agency, those around the game are starting to speculate that the reigning American League Most Valuable Player could be in line to receive the largest contract in the history of baseball.

Bob Nightengale of USA Today tweeted Monday that baseball executives are now predicting that Betts and Angels outfielder Mike Trout are the most likely players to break the $400 million mark.

Both Betts and Trout are scheduled for free agency after the 2020 season.

Whether or not $400-$500 million is a real possibility remains to be seen. Both Betts and Trout will be watching to see what Bryce Harper and Manny Machado get on the open market this offseason.

The Nationals reportedly offered Harper a $300 million contract at the end of the 2018 season.

Machado’s market, meanwhile, remains harder to peg. Nightengale also tweeted Monday that the Yankees interest in the star infielder seems lukewarm, at least for now.

But no matter what happens this offseason, it’s a fair bet that Mookie Betts is going to be a very, very rich man in two years time.

You can hear Matt McCarthy on 98.5 The Sports Hub’s own Hardcore Baseball podcast and on various 98.5 The Sports Hub programs. Follow him on Twitter @MattMcCarthy985.