Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Boston Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein has again avoided going to arbitration by signing Boston's two arbitration-eligible players before the parties even exchanged salary figures.
According to csnne.com and weei.com, the Red Sox signed closer Jonathan Papelbon to a $12-million deal, and center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury to $2.4-million, with incentives for $100,000 more, based on plate appearances.
Both players are coming off of down years. Ellsbury missed almost the whole season with rib injuries, while Papelbon had a 3.90 ERA and eight blown saves.
It will be interesting to see how Papelbon performs since he will be a free agent next year. If he has a monster season, he will ask for a monster contract and may move on. If he slips again, the Red Sox may not want him back ... i.e., this could be Papelbon's last season at Fenway.
Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.
Follow his thoughts on the Boston Red Sox and Portland Sea Dogs on Clearing the Bases
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