Boston Red Sox avoid arbitration with deals for eligible players

Mookie Betts Xander Bogaerts headline Red Sox arbitration-eligible players

Mookie Betts Xander Bogaerts headline Red Sox arbitration-eligible players

Betts, 26, made $10.85 million in 2018, a season in which all the three-time All-Star did was lead the majors in batting and slugging with a.346/.438/.640 slash line. A panel would then determine how much money that player would make for the 2019 season, choosing between the team's offer and the player's salary request.

American League MVP Mookie Betts, who went to a salary arbitration hearing and beat the Boston Red Sox past year, settled for $20 million this time around, a league source familiar with the agreement told ESPN on Friday. He's the face of the Red Sox, and one of the best all-around players in baseball.

The Red Sox and Betts couldn't agree on a contract the previous two offseasons, and in 2017, the Red Sox wound up renewing the right fielder's contract for just $950,000. A year ago Betts and the club went to arbitration, with Betts coming out on top with a $10.5 million salary in 2018. The prospect of the Red Sox arguing for a lower salary for the MVP victor would have been a particularly unflattering look for the team this year and also serve as a red flag for their chances to come to an agreement on a contract extension for Betts.

Sources told MLB.com and ESPN that deGrom and the Mets also avoided arbitration with a one-year, $17 million deal on Friday in his second year of eligibility. Shortstop Xander Bogaerts got a $12 million contract and outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. got $8.55 million.

The Sox have already struck deals with relievers Heath Hembree and Tyler Thornburg to avoid arbitration.

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