Saltalamacchia, Sox agree to $2.5m deal
The Red Sox chopped into their long list of unsigned players yesterday when catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia agreed to a one-year deal worth $2.5 million.
Saltalamacchia hit .235 last season with 16 home runs and 56 RBIs. He ranked third among American League catchers with a .452 slugging percentage and fourth with a .741 OPS. He also threw out 28 runners attempting to steal, the most for a Sox catcher since 2002.
The 26-year-old Saltalamacchia will arrive in spring training as the team’s primary catcher after splitting the duties for much of last season with Jason Varitek.
Light-hitting Kelly Shoppach was signed to be the backup. There remains a chance that Varitek is invited to spring training as a non-roster player.
The Sox have seven unsigned players eligible for arbitration: righthander Alfredo Aceves, infielder Mike Aviles, righthander Andrew Bailey, righthander Daniel Bard, outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury, lefthander Franklin Morales, and designated hitter David Ortiz.
Expect more signings before tomorrow’s deadline for the sides to exchange figures. But deals still can be made after that as the first hearings will not be until Feb. 1.
The Sox also officially announced that righthanders Aaron Cook and Justin Germano were signed to minor league contracts and invited to spring training.