FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — The Red Sox have reportedly agreed to terms with Rockies All-Star shortstop Trevor Story on a six-year, $140 million contract that would bring him to Boston to play second base.
The deal, which was first reported by USA Today and confirmed by multiple outlets, gives the Red Sox a long-term answer at second, which has been in flux since former AL MVP Dustin Pedroia was first injured in 2017, and leaves Xander Bogaerts in place at shortstop. The team also has a backup plan on the left side of the infield if Bogaerts opts out of his contract at the end of this season.
Story, 29, batted .251 with 24 homers and 75 RBIs for the Rockies last season, an off-year that followed three straight years in which he received NL MVP votes. In five major league seasons, he has never played any defensive position other than shortstop.
“He’s a big bat. We know what he does defensively already. I think that bat would play really well at Fenway just with that short porch over there,” Bogaerts told MLB.com last week when the deal was first rumored.
“It would be nice if we could get an addition like that after some of the big names that we lost to free agency or traded away,” Bogaerts said. “That’s a big boy. That’s a big bat right there. That’s an impact player.”
Story is the last to sign of a free agent shortstop class that sent Corey Seager to Texas (10 years, $325 million); Javier Báez to Detroit (six, $140 million); and, just this weekend, Carlos Correa to Minnesota (three, $105 million). Marcus Semien, a longtime shortstop who played second base for Toronto last season, signed a seven-year, $175 million contract with the Rangers.
Story is a lifetime .272 hitter with 158 homers and 450 RBIs in 745 career games. He has benefitted from the thin air in Denver, hitting .303 with 95 homers and 279 RBIs at Coors Field and .241 with 63 homers and 171 RBIs on the road.
With Story at second, Kiké Hernández could settle into center field and Christian Arroyo becomes a utility bat off the bench.
Red Sox manager Alex Cora declined to comment on the reports after Sunday’s spring training game against Baltimore, saying they were rumors. Even before the deal was announced, the news was welcomed inside the Red Sox clubhouse.
“It sparks the team,” pitcher Nate Eovaldi told MLB.com. “We know that they (the front office) want to win but then to add another big piece to the organization like that would be huge.”