Red Sox avoid arb with all 5 eligible players
BOSTON -- The Red Sox on Friday agreed to one-year contracts with Alex Verdugo, Nick Pivetta, Christian Arroyo, Ryan Brasier and Reese McGuire, thus avoiding arbitration with all players who were eligible.
A baseball source told MLB.com that the contracts have the following values: Verdugo ($6.3 million), Pivetta ($5.35 million), Arroyo ($2 million), Brasier ($2 million) and McGuire ($1.225 million).
Verdugo, a key contributor to the lineup in his first three seasons in Boston, will take on added importance in 2023.
Given the departures of Xander Bogaerts and J.D. Martinez and the indefinite loss of Trevor Story due to right elbow surgery, the Red Sox will need offense wherever they can get it from.
Last season, Verdugo achieved career highs in hits (166), doubles (39) and RBIs (74). While he has the versatility to play all three outfield spots, Verdugo is expected to get most of his playing time in right field.
Pivetta has been Boston’s most durable starter the last two seasons, taking all of his turns in the rotation. The righty, however, was inconsistent in 2022 (10-12, 4.56 ERA) and struggled mightily against American League East opponents (1-8, 6.72 ERA).
As for Arroyo, the Red Sox envision him playing in a utility role again, mainly at second base and shortstop but perhaps getting work in the corner outfield spots also.
This will be Brasier’s sixth season in Boston’s bullpen. He hopes to improve from a down year in 2022, when he went 0-3 with a 5.78 ERA in 68 appearances.
McGuire came over from the White Sox at last season’s Trade Deadline and did a solid job for the Red Sox at the plate and behind it. While McGuire’s solid defense was expected, his offense (.337 average in 36 games and 98 at-bats for Boston) exceeded projections.
The way the roster is currently constructed, McGuire slots in as the primary catcher. Connor Wong is hoping to earn more playing time by improving his offense. The Red Sox are also open to adding catching help from outside the organization.