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Report: Red Sox have offered J.D. Martinez five years, $100 million range

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Update (9:07 PM ET): Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that Martinez’s agent, Scott Boras, said that Olney’s report is “not accurate.”

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ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the Red Sox have made an offer to free agent outfielder J.D. Martinez in the range of five years and $100 million. Martinez is believed to be seeking a deal closer to seven years and $180 million. Given how slow the free agent market has moved this offseason, however, Martinez may end up having to lower his expectations.

Martinez, 30, is considered the top free agent hitter and has been linked to the Red Sox throughout the offseason. Last year, between the Tigers and Diamondbacks, Martinez hit .303/.376/.690 with 45 home runs and 104 RBI in 489 plate appearances.

Martinez has expressed his desire to continue playing in the outfield. However, the Red Sox are spoken for there with Andrew Benintendi, Jackie Bradley, Jr., and Mookie Betts. They would need to move someone from the outfield to the bench (or, perhaps, to first base or DH) to facilitate Martinez’s wishes.

Last week, it was reported that Martinez is believed to be willing to remain unsigned going into spring training in order to get what he is asking for. Most of the top free agents remain unsigned as we inch closer to February.

Blake Snell becomes client of Boras Corporation

Blake Snell
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Ken Rosenthal and Josh Tolentino of The Athletic report that Rays starter Blake Snell has switched agencies, going from Apex Baseball to Boras Corporation. Snell is currently signed to a five-year, $50 million contract and will be under contract through 2023.

Snell found himself in hot water two weeks ago when he said on his Twitch stream that he wouldn’t risk his life to play baseball during a pandemic while receiving significantly reduced pay. Some described Snell as tone deaf for saying, “I gotta get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine, okay?”

Boras represents many of baseball’s highest-paid players, including Gerrit Cole and Bryce Harper. Snell is not likely to win over any of the people he recently irritated by appearing to go after more money by hiring the highest-profile agent. What often goes unsaid is that players have a very limited window in which to use their elite athletic skills to make money.

Snell won the 2018 AL Cy Young Award, going 21-5 with a 1.89 ERA and a 221/64 K/BB ratio over 180 2/3 innings. He did not have nearly the same success last year, going 6-8 with a 4.29 ERA and a 147/40 K/BB ratio in 107 innings.