Boston Red Sox: Sign or pass on these 3 key upcoming free agents

Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi (17) Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi (17) Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports /
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Boston Red Sox
J.D. Martinez #28 of the Boston Red Sox (Photo by Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images) /

Boston Red Sox key free agent No. 2: J.D. Martinez

J.D. Martinez opted into the final year of his deal with the Boston Red Sox last offseason, and it ended up working out quite well for him from a financial perspective. Martinez made $19.35 million with Boston this season, and ended up turning in the worst season of his five year stint with the Sox (aside from the shortened 2020 season). Now, Martinez will be hitting the free agent market with a lot of question marks surrounding his future.

It wasn’t a horrible season from Martinez (.274 BA, 16 HR, 62 RBI, .790 OPS) but it was clear he took a major step back this season after a resurgent 2021 campaign. If it weren’t for him suddenly getting hot right at the end of the season (he hit four home runs in his last nine games) Martinez’s numbers on the season would look even worse.

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Martinez somehow earned an All-Star selection this season, which says more to the lack of true designated hitter candidates in the American League than it does about his performance. But that was pretty much the highlight of his season. He struggled mightily for pretty much the entire second half of the season, and it was honestly surprising to see him not get moved at the trade deadline this season.


Even though he wasn’t traded at the deadline, for whatever reason that may be, it’s clear Martinez and the Sox knew they were going to be parting ways towards the end of the season. Martinez is going to turn 36 next season, and has already seen his production begin to decline. Boston got one more season of Martinez than they needed, and they will almost certainly be moving on from him for good this time around.