Red Sox lefty David Price is in the middle of arguably his best stretch since joining the ballclub on a seven-year, $217 million deal. He's 4-0 with a 1.78 ERA and 53 strikeouts against nine walks in 50 2/3 innings since the All-Star break. Should this continue, many might wonder if Price would exercise his opt-out clause and hit free agency again this coming offseason.
As far as Price goes, he's not even thinking about it. Via MassLive:
"Why would I leave here to go to a team that's not as good as this team?" Price said. "I came here to win. I don't worry about all the other stuff. Just come here to win. We're going to have a really good chance to do that."
Let's keep in mind that this past offseason wasn't exactly as kind to the free agents as it had been the previous several years. Price is 32 and has four years and $127 million left on his deal. We can't be sure he'd get that, so it makes sense to not opt out.
Here are the rest of the players with opt-out clauses coming this offseason:
For years, it's been expected that Kershaw would opt out and that's one of the main reasons the Dodgers needed to stay under the luxury tax threshold this season. He's got two years and $65 million left on the deal should he not opt out. The future Hall of Famer is having another very good season (2.42 ERA, 162 ERA+, 0.98 WHIP), but he also missed time due to injury for the third straight season. He'll be heading to his 31-year-old season, too. This isn't the no-brainer it once was, but he's Clayton Freaking Kershaw. It's hard to see him not getting a lot more than $65 million this coming offseason. He'll opt out.
The former closer has two years and $28 million left on his deal. He's dealt with injuries in his two Giants years and wasn't very good in 2017. This year he's pitched to a 2.84 ERA and hasn't given up much power, but opposing teams have hit .289 with a .345 on-base percentage. His walk rate is the worst it has been since 2011 and his 1.48 WHIP is awful. The relief pitcher market has Craig Kimbrel, Adam Ottavino, David Robertson, Jeurys Familia, Kelvin Herrera, Cody Allen and much more. Melancon should probably stay put.
There are five years and $106 million left. Heyward has an 82 OPS+ and 5.4 WAR in his three seasons with the Cubs. Do the math. No chance.
Long ago, Andrus signed an eight-year, $120 million extension that didn't start until 2015. He now can opt out of the remaining four years and $58 million. Maybe if the opt out was after 2016 or 2017 this would work. Now? I'm not seeing it. Andrus is hitting .262/.312/.381 (81 OPS+) and has 1.5 WAR. It's hard to see him getting a four-year deal similar to what's left in Texas. He'll stay.
There are two years and $32.5 million left. Tomas hit .262/.280/.465 this season ... in Triple-A. Anyone want to guess the chances he opts out?
It shouldn't be a big surprise after the players were taken to the cleaners last offseason, but it looks like Kershaw will be the only player who opts for free agency among those with opt-out clauses. Remember when we thought those had the chance to be team-friendly?