Report: Where Rafael Devers extension talks stand after one-year deal originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
Devers and the Red Sox agreed to a one-year, $17.5 million deal to avoid arbitration, per ESPN's Jeff Passan. While it's a good sign that arbitration wasn't needed for Devers' 2023 contract, he'll still become an unrestricted free agent after the season, and recent reports suggested he and the team are far apart in negotiations over a multi-year deal.
It appears the two sides are still talking, however. Devers and the Red Sox remain "engaged" in contract discussions, which have been "steady," MLB Network's Jon Heyman reported Wednesday morning.
The Boston Globe's Alex Speier and MassLive.com's Chris Cotillo also used "steady" to describe talks between the Red Sox and Devers, so it sounds like there's still a possibility a deal could get done. Devers reportedly is asking for at least $300 million over multiple years, however, and Boston's last reported offer was for roughly $220 million, so there's work to be done.
Devers is right to seek $300 million-plus in free agency as one of the best third basemen in baseball; the 26-year-old hit .295 with 27 home runs and 88 RBIs last season despite batting in a subpar Red Sox lineup. Red Sox fans are also right to be wary that Boston will come to an agreement with Devers after letting popular shortstop Xander Bogaerts sign an 11-year, $280 million deal with the San Diego Padres this offseason.
Devers reportedly isn't interested in discussing his contract during the 2023 season, so the clock is ticking for team owner John Henry and chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom.