Red Sox, Rick Porcello agree to table extension talks during the season

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WEEI’s Rob Bradford reports that the Red Sox and Rick Porcello have agreed not to discuss a contract extension during the regular season. Porcello, who can become a free agent after the season, said he wants to focus on pitching, eschewing any potential distractions a contract negotiation might cause. The right-hander had said last month didn’t expect to negotiate a contract with the Red Sox anyway.

Porcello, 26, avoided arbitration with the Red Sox, agreeing on a one-year, $12.5 million salary for the 2014 season. He will serve as the No. 2 pitcher in the starting rotation for the Red Sox behind Clay Buchholz. He’s scheduled to make his 2015 season debut on Wednesday against Phillies starter Aaron Harang at Citizens Bank Park.

Porcello had the best season of his career in 2014, finishing with a 3.43 ERA and a 129/41 K/BB ratio in 204 2/3 innings with the Tigers. In December, he was dealt to the Red Sox in the Yoenis Cespedes trade.