Saturday’s reported Michael Wacha signing may just be the start for the Red Sox, as Chaim Bloom’s squad has been identified as the one of the three ‘main teams’ in on free agent shortstop Javier Baez, according to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman.
In addition to the Red Sox, Heyman linked the Tigers and Mets as the other main teams in on Baez, and noted that the Tigers are “determined to add a big time shortstop.” The Mets, for what it’s worth, have since spent considerable money elsewhere, signing outfielder Starling Marte to a $78 million deal and Eduardo Escobar to a $20 million contract.
The 28-year-old Baez is on the open market following a 2021 campaign that saw him hit .265, launch 31 homers, and drive in 87 RBIs in 138 games between the Mets and Cubs. Baez absolutely mashed following his move from Wrigleyville to Queens, too, with a .371 on-base percentage, .515 slugging percentage, and .886 OPS in 47 games with New York.
A two-time All Star and part of the Cubs team that won the 2016 World Series, Baez is not too far removed from what was a career year in 2018, with a career-best 34 homers and 111 RBIs, along with a .290 average and .881 OPS, for Chicago.
The No. 9 overall pick from the 2011 MLB Draft, the Puerto Rican-born Baez is a career .264 hitter with 149 homers and 465 RBIs in 862 games between the Cubs and Mets. In addition to his World Series ring and All Star appearances, Baez has won a Gold Glove (2020) and Silver Slugger (2018), and finished second in the voting for the 2018 National League MVP Award.
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