On Saturday morning, the Red Sox made their five-year, $145 million contract extension with Chris Sale official after the left-hander passed his physical Friday night.
Sale will still earn the $15 million he was due in 2019 before this new contract kicks in.
One notable detail about this deal is that it his heavily front-loaded, as the 29-year-old will make approximately $30 million per year from 2020-2022.
Then, we reach the opt-out part of the pact, where Sale will have the opportunity to become a free agent at the age of 33 following the 2022 season, or he could opt-in for the final two years and $55 million of the contract.
This contract also includes deferred money, a full no-trade clause starting in the middle of the 2020 season, and a vesting option worth at least $20 million for a sixth season in 2025 depending on the number of starts Sale makes, notes ESPN’s Jeff Passan.
According to the Boston Globe’s Alex Speier and the Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, the Red Sox chose to announce this extension as five-years/$145 million instead of six-years/$160 million like some initially thought in order to help with luxury-tax payroll.
As Rosenthal states, “average annual value of extension is $29M, but structure of deferrals lowers Sale’s annual luxury-tax number to $25.6M,” meaning the club, at this point, will not be hitting the third tier of luxury tax penalties with their payroll for 2019 still below $246 million.
One final note from Passan, Sale’s extension can increase in value from 2021-2024 and the value of the vesting option in 2025 can also fluctuate depending on where the southpaw finished in Cy Young Award voting in previous seasons.
So, I think I covered just about everything.
Sale, who was scheduled to pitch against the Minnesota Twins Friday, will be making his final Grapefruit League start of 2019 against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Saturday afternoon.
First pitch of Boston’s Grapefruit League finale is scheduled for 1:05 EDT at JetBlue Park.