Days after Mookie Betts signed a record $26 million, one-year deal to avoid arbitration, his teammate David Price gave his prediction about the outfielder’s future in Boston.
In an interview with WBZ’s Jonny Miller, Price affirmed past comments from Betts about wanting to explore free agency, and said the four-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glove winner has “earned the right” to do so.
“He’s said it multiple times, he’s going to go the free agent market,” Price said. “He’s not saying he won’t sign with Boston once he hits free agency or anything like that. He’s earned his right to get there.”
Stressing the rarity of free agency as a reason Betts wants to test the market, Price compared Betts’s contract status with that of Chris Sale, who has never been a free agent.
“I think it’s under seven or eight percent of major league players get to that point in their career where they are a free agent. And Mookie’s earned that right. And he’s expressed that feeling he’s going to get that point. And if he does, hopefully we can re-sign him.”
Price also recognized Brock Holt’s contributions to the team as the infielder remains unsigned.
“Brock meant a lot to our team,” Price told Miller. “He meant a lot to the fan base. All the work he did away from the field [with the Jimmy Fund], that will definitely be missed. But that was a decision I guess the front office needed to make. I’m sure Brock will find a good spot for him and will contribute the way he has for us.”
Price, who is owed $96 million over the next three seasons to finish out his then-record-setting seven-year deal from 2016, told Miller he was not concerned about his own name coming up in offseason trade talks.
“It doesn’t affect me,” Price said. “I’ve been traded from Tampa, from Detroit. I’ve been traded twice. This is a business at the end of the day and changes are going to be made, moves will be made. And you’ve just got to go out there and continue to play baseball.”
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