Red Sox haven't started contract talks with Mookie Betts

Rob Bradford
November 06, 2019 - 12:24 pm
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The Mookie Betts talks are coming. They just haven't started yet.

Speaking at the Red Sox' announcement regarding this offseason's Winter Weekend at MGM Springfield, president Sam Kennedy told MassLive.com that the latest round of contract talks with Betts haven't begun.

The lack of engagement isn't surprising considering how the Red Sox would have to maneuver their roster in order to commit to a long-term deal with Betts. With the news that J.D. Martinez is back for at least one more season, that means the team will have to get increasingly creative with its 2020 payroll in order to start realistic conversations with the Gold Glove right fielder.

According to MLB Trade Rumors arbitration projections, Betts is slated to make $27.7 million this offseason if no extension is worked out.

The Red Sox have made numerous overtures toward Betts in previous offseasons when it comes to locking in on an extension, with the outfielder admitting to WEEI.com in Sept. the first time such an option was offered still represents his most difficult decision.

"That was a really emotional time because I was like, ‘Mom, we’ve never seen this amount of money.’ She was like, ‘OK, cool. It’s a lot of money. I think we know it’s a lot of money. So let’s focus on the facts. Let’s focus on what is real and we took the emotions out of it.' The first one was definitely the hardest," said Betts, who agreed to a one-year, $20 million deal last offseason. "At the time we had never seen anything like that."