David Ortiz finalized a two-year, $26 million contract with the Red Sox earlier today. But he could make more if he stays healthy.
Rob Bradford of WEEI.com was told by a baseball source that Ortiz’s contract includes specific language regarding the right Achilles tendon injury which limited him to just 90 games this season. The new deal currently calls for him to make an $11 million base salary in 2014, but his salary will be bumped up to $15 million if he misses 20 or fewer days on the disabled list in 2013 due to the injury. That would bring the total value of the deal to $30 million.
Ortiz, who turns 37 later this month, underwent ultrasound treatment on his Achilles tendon early last month. The veteran slugger is currently in rehab mode, but he’s expected to be ready for spring training.
The Mariners announced that the club claimed Kaleb Cowart off waivers from the Angels. Interestingly, the Mariners list Cowart as both an outfielder and a right-handed pitcher. Cowart has never pitched professionally, but the Mariners will try him as a two-way player next season, Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reports. Cowart was a highly regarded pitcher in high school.
Cowart, 26, has played all over the field, spending most of his time at third base and second base, but also logging a handful of innings at first base, shortstop, and left field. He hasn’t hit much at all, owning a career .177/.241/.293 triple-slash line across 380 plate appearances in the big leagues. It makes sense to try another angle.
Shohei Ohtani, of course, is helping to popularize the rebirth of the two-way player. In his first year in the majors after having played in Japan for five years, Ohtani won the AL Rookie of the Year Award by posting a .925 OPS in 367 plate appearances along with a 3.31 ERA over 10 starts. Don’t expect Cowart to hit those lofty numbers, but additional versatility could prolong his life in the majors.