Mookie Betts, Red Sox avoid arbitration with $20 million deal

Craig Calcaterra
NBC Sports

Thanks to the deadline we mentioned earlier, a lot of players are signing arbitration-avoiding deals with their clubs today. None will be bigger than this one, however: Mookie Betts and the Red Sox have agreed to a one-year deal for $20 million.

Betts, who is just in his second year of arbitration-eligibility, made $10.5 million last season, so he’ll nearly double his salary. He certainly earned it, after he hit .346/.438/.640 with 32 homers, 30 steals and 129 runs and won the AL MVP Award for the World Series champions.

Needless to say, this is record deal for a player in his second year of arbitration eligibility. Assuming he doesn’t fall off a cliff in 2019, he’ll shatter the third-year record too. Or, alternatively, he’ll agree to a very, very lucrative long-term extension to keep him in Boston and away from the free agent market for a very, very long time.

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