The Red Sox are in agreement with Trevor Story on a contract for $ 140MM, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today. (Twitter links) It will be a six-year deal, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. There is a “complicated opt-out,” according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, “Whereby if he opts out the Red Sox retain an option to keep him at different terms.” After four years, Story can opt out of the deal, but then Boston is allowed to negate the opt-out by picking up a seventh-year option and making it a seven-year, $ 160MM deal, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post. At that time, the Red Sox will be deciding between a $ 5MM buyout and a $ 25MM salary for that seventh year, per Heyman.
Story will take over at second base with Xander Bogaerts staying on as the team’s shortstop, per Jim Bowden of The Athletic. Red Sox manager Alex Cora has confirmed that plan, per Marly Rivera of ESPN. Story is a client of Excel Sports Management.
It had been a fairly quiet offseason for the Red Sox up to this point, with the club mostly focused on its pitching staff, adding veterans like Rich Hill, Michael Wacha and Jake Diekman. On the position player side of things, they had only really subtracted since the offseason began, sending Hunter Renfroe to the Brewers for Jackie Bradley Jr. and prospects. Story, however, they certainly have a tremendous impact bat to their lineup.
After the departure of Troy Tulowitzki, the story took over the everyday shortstop job in Colorado and ran with it. Over the past six seasons, Story has played in 745 games and hit 158 home runs, hitting an overall .272 / .340 / .523, for a wRC + of 112. He also stole 100 and provided excellent defense, accruing 21.6 fWAR in that time.
In addition to helping out the Red Sox this year, the addition of Story makes sense from a long-term view. Xander Bogaerts can opt out of the remainder of his contract at the end of this season, when he will have three years and $ 60MM left on it, something he seems likely to do. If that should come to pass, they would already have his replacement on the roster. As noted above, the plan for this season is to keep Bogaerts at short and have Story play second, moving Enrique Hernandez to regular outfield duty. Story missed some of last year’s season with an injury to his throwing elbow, and some scouts expressed the belief that he would be best utilized at second base due to that injury impacting his throwing arm. Boston will now have at least one year to see if Story’s arm can rebound in any way before deciding how to proceed beyond 2022.
More to come.