Ortiz agrees to $16 million extension with Sox

Ortiz agrees to $16 million extension with Sox
March 23, 2014, 6:00 pm
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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- David Ortiz wishes to finish his career in a Red Sox uniform. The Red Sox want that, too.
On Sunday, they took a step together to help bring that closer to reality.
Ortiz, 38, agreed to a one-year contract extension worth $16 million for 2015, according to an industry source. It also includes a club/vesting option for 2016 and a club option for 2017. Ortiz was entering the final year of a two-year deal, signed after 2012, that will pay him $15 million in 2014.
The two sides made significant progress at the end of the week and it seemed obvious that an agreement was near. The sight of agent Fern Cuza in Red Sox camp signaled that an offical deal could be reached, and late Sunday afternoon, it was.
The deal gives Ortiz a slight ($1 million) raise over his current salary, which, according to a source, was an important factor for the slugger. The two-year deal signed in November of 2012 was worth a guaranteed $26 million, but when Ortiz reached some incentives for games played and days not spent on the DL for 2013, it triggered a bump in his 2014 pay to $15 million.
The slight raise was critical for Ortiz, who, along with Mike Napoli, is currently the highest-paid player on the team for 2015. That figure, however, is likely to be soon topped by Jon Lester, who is eligible for free agency after the season and is also in contract extension talks with the team.
After an Achillies injury wiped out almost half of 2012 for Ortiz, he rebounded with a stellar 2013 season, posting a .959 OPS. He was one of just three players in baseball to hit .300 with 30 homers and 100 RBI.
He followed up his terrific regular season with an even better postseason. His grand slam in Game 2 of the ALCS brought the Red Sox back to life and he was named MVP of the World Series with a .688 batting average and six RBI in six games.
In 11 seasons with the Red Sox, Ortiz has won three World Series titles and hit 373 homers while knocking in 1,191 runs with a .962 OPS.
Ortiz had invited controversy earlier this offseason when he suggested that if he didn't get an extension to his liking, he would look to go elsewhere. He later clarified that he was seeking just a one-year deal, at which point it seemed highly likely that a deal in spring training would get worked out.
ESPNBoston.com was the first to report an agreement in place.