Beckett signs contract extension
July 20, 2006 Leave a comment
You’ve no doubt heard that the Red Sox signed Josh Beckett yesterday for the next three years. The contract details look something like this:
$2 million signing bonus
$6.5 million in 2007
$9.5 million in 2008
$12 million in 2009
$12.5 million club option in 2010
That means that the contract is worth a guaranteed $30 million over three years. There are some other performance incentives in there, so Mr. Beckett is a very rich man. I think Beckett knew that he hit paydirt when he was traded here, so he was happy to come to Boston.
I like this signing, because it ties up the 26 year old pitcher for the prime of his career, at a fairly reasonable . This seems to be a recurring theme with Theo, signing players for the 25-30 year old range of their careers, a la Coco Crisp. Three years with a club option is a relatively modest contract, and still a safe bet, even if Beckett gets injured or doesn’t turn out to be a true ace.
Critics will talk about how erratic Beckett has been this season, and his 4.78 ERA. But it’s hard to argue with a 12-5 record, 102 Ks in 122 IP, and no shoulder or blister problems. Beckett’s doing well in a lot of other statistical categories, suggesting that he’s pitching a little better than those numbers suggest. His WHIP is a very respectable 1.24 for the season, opponents are hitting just .239 against him.
The one most troubling number is 27, as in home runs surrendered. Josh Beckett only allowed 30 HR the last two seasons combined, but he’s liable to develop whiplash from watching all those balls go deep. My theory is that this is part of his adjustment to the AL. In the National League, Beckett could just rear back and blow it by people, but in this league, there are a lot of good fastball hitters. Beckett needs to work in other pitches on key counts, or learn to pull the string on his fastball at times to keep hitters more off balance. That will solve both the HR and ERA issues.
In a way, we should thankful he hasn’t been dominant Josh so far this year, or else we’d have had to shell out a lot more to sign this talented youngster. You can turn it on now that you’re under contract, dominant Josh. I look forward to Beckett being an anchor on this staff for many more years.