Thursday is somewhat of an unofficial deadline for the Red Sox and star third baseman Rafael Devers. The two sides have been working on a contract extension for the 25-year-old, but Devers has said he doesn’t want to have those conversations during the season.
With that deadline now less than 48 hours away, Devers has rejected the latest offer from the Red Sox, according to MLB insider Hector Gomez. “The player rejected because it was lower than he is willing to consider,” Gomez tweeted Wednesday evening. “Devers will focus now on his 2022 season looking to further increase his market value.”
Chris Cotillo of MassLive followed up on that report shortly after, tweeting that “the sides were very far off.” However, he added that “considering this is the first time the sides have really talked about a deal not a major surprise they’re far off.”
Devers is currently in his second of three arbitration years. When spring training began, he and the team avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $11.2 million contract. The team can take him to arbitration again if needed in 2023, but he’d become an unrestricted free agent after the season.
On his end, Devers has done plenty this spring to remind the Red Sox why they should pay him. He hit .370 in 21 games, with six home runs and 12 RBIs.
Perhaps more pertinent is the fact that that he is coming off yet another MVP-contending season. Devers slashed .279/.352/.538 last season in 156 games, while hitting a career-high 38 home runs with 113 runs driven in.
Devers’ contract isn’t the only major deal the clock is ticking on for the Red Sox. Shortstop Xander Bogaerts is expected to exercise an opt-out in his contract after this upcoming season.
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