As many of you probably remember, soon after the Red Sox finalized the Adrian Gonzalez trade with the Padres, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reported that the two sides had secretly come to terms on a seven year contract extension worth $154M. According to sources, both parties agreed to wait until after Opening Day to announce the deal in order to avoid paying the competitive balance tax. While the report was vehemently disputed by both Adrian Gonzalez and key members of Red Sox leadership, the rumors persisted.
This past Tuesday, deep within column on Albert Pujols trade possibilities, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports mentioned that a few sources had confirmed Nightengale’s original report. The only difference was the amount of money involved in the deal.
“Then there are the Red Sox. Sources say they are set to sign Gonzalez to a seven-year, $164 million extension, but will wait until after Opening Day to announce the deal, enabling them to save on the luxury tax.”
Not surprisingly, Theo Epstein denied the rumors that the Red Sox were “set to sign” Gonzalez to a contract. While he didn’t specifically address Rosenthal’s report, he did indicate there was “mutual good faith” between the two parties that would hopefully allow for smooth negotiations. With Adrian Gonzalez having already reported to Spring Training, there’s a good chance negotiations will ramp up the in next couple of weeks potentially leading to an agreement.
To read more of my thoughts on Adrian Gonzalez’s value, check out my latest article (posted Friday at 8:00 a.m.) for Fire Brand of the American League.