JD Martinez opted to Keep the Red Sox as his employer on Sunday afternoon .The five year  deal he signed with the Sox during Spring Training in 2018, included three opt-out clauses – following each of the second, third and fourth years. Martinez will earn $19.375 million in the final season of his contract.

Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom addressed Martinez’s return Sunday.

“You learn over time in this game not to be too surprised by anything. Certainly happy he’s with us, He’s such a force in the lineup, not only what he produces but how he transforms what the lineup looks like around him and how he changes the conversation in the cage, the preparation before games. So we’re very excited he’s back with us.”

In keeping with the day’s activities the Red Sox exercised their $7 million club option on catcher Christian Vázquez, who has played his entire career in a Boston uniform. and it’s safe to say Christian is thrilled

 

Bye Bye Bye

The Sox on the other hand chose to save some coin. And did not pick up the 10 million dollar option on Righty Garrett Richards and a 6 million dollar option on left-hander Martín Pérez, both of which are now free agents.

 

With Martinez’s numbers firmly in the books Bloom and Sam Kennedy can now go about their offseason. Now knowing they have less to spend but a huge portion of their offense is under contract for the 2022 season.

 

 Dollars and Sense

Where does this leave Bloom on the Kyle Schwarber front. who recently declined his portion of a mutual option worth $11.5 million? That remains to be seen. Schwarber is a total fit both in the lineup and the clubhouse in Boston, but can Alex Cora continue the balance he has achieved in the later half of 2021 for an entire year? The mixing and matching to get both these needed bats into the lineup on a consistent basis over 162 games could become taxing.

 

Bloom discussed this on Sunday saying 

“We’ve been engaged with Kyle. We’re going to stay engaged, Knowing J.D. is here changes how we look at the lineup and position-player group generally. But as I said after the season, we played some of our best baseball with both of those guys. They both fit. This just gives us more clarity going forward and which paths we take as we reshape and put together this position-player group for 2022.”

Bloom’s highly valued farm system has first baseman Tristan Casas waiting. Not to mention Bobby Dalbec who launched 25 home runs in his rookie campaign. But more impressively batted .269. 15 of those home runs and  42 of his 78 RBI in the second half of the season. 

 

Whatever happens it will be interesting to see how this shakes out. Bloom and Kennedy have both touted “Their Plan Working” in 2021 and will not deviate from it. Excuse me, my head hurts and I need an Advil and two scotches.

As always you can follow/give me grief on Twitter @Tmurph207