Chaim Bloom, the Boston Red Sox's top baseball executive, spoke with the media on Thursday, a day after his team's disappointing season came to a close. Predictably, Bloom was met with several questions concerning the future of the left side of his infield: shortstop Xander Bogaerts, who can opt out of his contract this winter, and third baseman Rafael Devers, himself a free agent at the conclusion of next season.
Bloom made it clear that the Red Sox intend to keep both Bogaerts and Devers into next season.
"I don't ever want to make public any of the blow by blow, but what I can say is this: That process is going to start right away from our end," Bloom told reporters, including Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com. "Obviously, we know we haven't found that path yet. We still want to. We're going to work really hard at it."
Sean McAdam of the Boston Sports Journal reported later Thursday that owner John Henry and chairman Tom Werner have already met with Bogaerts "several times" within the past week. No offers were submitted, but the Red Sox brain trust emphasized to Bogaerts that they want to retain his services for the long haul.
Bogaerts has three years and $60 million guaranteed remaining on his deal. It stands to reason that he'll require a longer term and more money to stick around. After all, the 30-year-old Bogaerts posted a 131 OPS+ this season, his highest mark since 2019. Bogaerts wouldn't need to sign a Corey Seager-like deal in order to come out ahead. He would be in line for a nice pay bump if he landed a contract modeled after the one Javier Báez signed with the Detroit Tigers last winter: six years, $140 million.
Elsewhere, Bloom said that trading Devers is "not on our radar."
Devers, who has developed into a well-above-average hitter, will qualify for free agency next winter if the Red Sox fail to reach a long-term agreement with him. He's certain to receive a healthy raise on top of the $11.2 million he received this season. It's worth noting that Devers reportedly rejected a pair of extension offers back in the springtime, suggesting that the two sides may differ on what his services are worth.