Red Sox complete $7 million deal with Duvall, cut Barnes

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
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BOSTON – Adam Duvall and the Boston Red Sox finalized their one-year, $7 million contract.

The veteran outfielder can earn another $3 million in performance bonuses based on plate appearances. The sides agreed to terms last week, pending a physical.

To make room for Duvall on the 40-man roster, Boston cut former closer Matt Barnes – an All-Star in 2021 and a key member of the Red Sox bullpen for much of his nine-year career.

In a surprise move, the 32-year-old Barnes was designated for assignment, meaning the team has seven days to trade, release or send him outright to the minors. The right-handed reliever has more than $10.6 million remaining on his contract.

Duvall, 34, enters his 10th major league season, having played for the Giants, Reds, Marlins and two stints with Atlanta. He was an All-Star for Cincinnati in 2016 and won a Gold Glove for the Braves in 2021, batting .228 with 38 homers and an NL-leading 113 RBIs to help lead them to a World Series championship.

His addition helps the Red Sox keep Kike Hernandez in the infield, where they have lost shortstop Xander Bogaerts to free agency and his replacement, Trevor Story, to elbow surgery.

Duvall, a right-handed hitter, batted .213 with 12 home runs and 36 RBIs in 86 games for Atlanta last season. He made 43 starts in center field, 26 in left and 11 in right.

In all, Duvall has a .230 batting average with 163 home runs and 478 RBIs. He hit three homers in a game at Fenway Park on Sept. 2, 2020. He had two home runs and six RBIs during the 2021 World Series for Atlanta.

Duvall gets a $1 million signing bonus and a $6 million salary this season. He can earn an additional $500,000 each for 350, 400, 450 and 500 plate appearances, and $1 million for 550 plate appearances.

Barnes helped the Red Sox win the 2018 World Series, going 6-4 with a 3.65 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 62 games covering 61 2/3 innings as a hard-throwing setup man that season.

He developed into the team’s closer and had 24 saves in 2021, making the AL All-Star squad before struggling in the second half and losing the job. He fell to 0-4 with a 4.31 ERA and eight saves in 44 appearances last year, striking out 34 batters and walking 21 in 39 2/3 innings.

Barnes, born and raised in nearby Connecticut, was drafted 19th overall by Boston in 2011 out of UConn. A converted starter, he is 32-30 with a 4.07 ERA and 47 saves in nine big league seasons with the Red Sox, and was the longest-tenured member of the team.

He ranks second in franchise history in relief appearances and strikeouts in relief.

Colin Poche, Rays go to arbitration just $125,000 apart

Colin Poche torn UCL
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Reliever Colin Poche went to salary arbitration with the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday with the sides just $125,000 apart.

The gap between the $1.3 million the pitcher asked for and the $1,175,000 the team offered was the smallest among the 33 players who exchanged proposed arbitration figures last month. The case was heard by John Woods, Jeanne Vonhof and Walt De Treux, who will hold their decision until later this month.

A 29-year-old left-hander, Poche had Tommy John surgery on July 29, 2020, and returned to the major leagues last April 22 after six appearances at Triple-A Durham. Poche was 4-2 with a 3.99 ERA and seven saves in 65 relief appearances for the Rays. He struck out 64 and walked 22 in 58 2/3 innings.

Poche had a $707,800 salary last year.

Tampa Bay went to arbitration on Monday with reliever Ryan Thompson, whose decision also is being held until later this month. He asked for $1.2 million and the Rays argued for $1 million.

Rays right-hander Jason Adam and outfielder Harold Ramirez remain scheduled for hearings.

Players and teams have split four decisions thus far. All-Star pitcher Max Fried ($13.5 million) lost to Atlanta and reliever Diego Castillo ($2.95 million) was defeated by Seattle, while pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Marlins.

A decision also is pending for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

Eighteen additional players are eligible for arbitration and hearings are scheduled through Feb. 17. Among the eligible players is Seattle utilityman Dylan Moore, who has a pending three-year contract worth $8,875,000.