J.D. Martinez will be on the Red Sox for 2020
J.D. Martinez decided to opt-in and will remain with the Red Sox for the 2020 season. Martinez has three years and $62.5 Million left on his contract, with the choice to opt-out after any of the remaining years. Having Martinez stay with the Red Sox is huge for them. They have a big power hitter in the middle of the lineup. With maybe the loss of Mookie Betts for next season, having a big bat is important for 2020. John Henry wants to reduce the team's payroll of $208 million to reset the competitive balance tax. There are lots of questions Bloom has to answer this offseason. Will one of them be trading J.D. Martinez?
What Will Chaim Bloom do now?
Are the Red Sox overpaying for Martinez? Yes, because he likely couldn't get that type of money anywhere else, so he decided to opt-in. Martinez has averaged 40 home runs and 118 RBI's in two seasons with the Red Sox. Could Bloom trade Martinez to cut payroll? Yes, but they would be losing a key piece in the middle of the lineup. He isn't David Ortiz, but he's the next closest thing.
Rumors are the Rangers are interested in trading for David Price, Chris Sale, or Nathan Eovaldi, and in return sending the Sox prospects. There is some speculation Martinez will get traded after opting in for the 2020 season. Bloom said last week when he was introduced as Chief Baseball Officer "I would say generally, our top priority is going to be sustainability and competitiveness over the long term. And that could take many forms, but that's really going to be the top priority as we think about moves." The most important thing is the long term for this team and building a great team for many years to come.
Martinez had the most home runs on the team late in the season in 2019. You could say that was because he had the chance to opt-out and maybe teams would be considering signing him. He had 10 home runs in the month of August, with 29 RBI's. The speculation that Betts gets traded because Martinez opted-in is heating up, and it will be interesting to see what Bloom does with Betts now that Martinez will be on the Red Sox in 2020.