The Red Sox have avoided arbitration with Mookie Betts by signing the reigning AL MVP to a one year $20 million deal for the 2019 season. The news was first reported by ESPN’s Jeff Passan.
This is Betts’ second year of arbitration eligibility with one year left to go. Ahead of the 2018 season, Betts had won his arbitration case with the Red Sox securing a salary of $10.5 million.
This $20 million deal is a record number for a player in his second year of arbitration eligibility.
Betts took home the American League MVP this past season after having a sensational year where he became one of the clear cut favorites early on. Betts led Major League Baseball in both batting average (.346) and slugging percentage (.640). And it goes without saying that he is one of the top defenders in baseball as he brought home his third Gold Glove Award.
The reigning American League MVP and World Series Champion enters his third and final year of arbitration eligibility next season and is set to become a free agent after the team’s 2020 campaign.
Per Bob Nightengale, Betts can also reach an extra $400 thousand in incentives.