By Matt McCarthy, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Red Sox will tender a contract to Jackie Bradley Jr., quelling speculation around baseball that the team would part ways with the Gold Glove centerfielder before Monday’s non-tender deadline.
Alex Speier of the Boston Globe reported that the team will indeed offer Bradley a contract as he heads into the final year of salary arbitration before free agency.
The deadline to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players is tonight. There’d been some question among MLB teams about whether the Red Sox might non-tender Jackie Bradley Jr. That’s not going to happen: Per source, the Red Sox are tendering a 2020 contract to Bradley.— Alex Speier (@alexspeier) December 2, 2019
The cash-conscious Red Sox are looking to slash more than $30 million from their payroll in 2020, leading some to believe that Bradley’s salary, which is expected to be in the $10-11 million range, might lead to a non-tender. But it is still not guaranteed that Bradley will suit up for the Red Sox in 2020, as the organization could look to find a trade partner for him.
Bradley hit .225 with 21 home runs and a .738 OPS in 2019.
In a surprise move, the Red Sox decided not to tender a contract to infielder Marco Hernandez. The 26-year-old player returned to the majors this season after missing nearly two years with a shoulder injury and hit .250 in 155 plate appearances.
Hernandez figured to compete for playing time at second base in 2020, with Brock Holt set for free agency and Dustin Pedroia coming off another knee surgery last summer.