Red Sox

Matt Barnes ‘grateful’ for contract extension with the Red Sox

Barnes agreed to a two-year extension with a club option for a third year in 2024.

Jim Davis/Globe Staff
Matt Barnes will be pitching in Boston through at least the 2023 season. Jim Davis/Globe Staff

Matt Barnes has a deal to stay in Boston through at least 2023, and he couldn’t be any more excited.

The Red Sox’ closer agreed to a two-year extension with a club option for a third season on Sunday.

“This is a first class organization that treats us like family and provides a winning opportunity every single season, so I’m incredibly grateful to them and honored and humbled to be able to continue my career in Boston,” Barnes told reporters Sunday. “I’m looking forward to many more winning seasons and World Series titles here.”

The 2021 season has been a stellar one for Barnes. In his first year as the Red Sox’ closer, Barnes has 19 saves in 23 opportunities and a career-best 2.68 ERA. He also has a career-best strikeout rate (44.6 percent) and a career-low walk rate (7.2 percent), helping him earn his first All-Star Game nod in his career.


With the step-up in performance comes an increase in pay. Barnes will reportedly earn roughly $7.5 million per year on his new deal, which is a $3 million increase from the $4.5 million he’s making in 2021.

For Barnes, who had been negotiating an extension with the team in recent months, he just wanted “a fair contract for what I was doing.”

“We were able to not only come to that, but when you add everything else into the equation, this was just a place I wanted to stay,” Barnes said.

With the new deal, Barnes will be the seventh-highest paid closer for the 2022 season, according to Spotrac. While Barnes will get paid like a top closer, staying in the same place he’s played in for his whole career makes it even better for him.

“I love the city of Boston, I love playing for the fans here,” Barnes said. “So when you start to add up all of these things, there really wasn’t a place I wanted to play that wasn’t Boston. I’m really happy we were able to get something done.”

Red Sox Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom appreciates what Barnes, who was selected by the team in the first round of the 2011 draft, has brought to the organization.


“Obviously we’ve all seen it over the past number of years, Matt has established himself as one of the better relievers in baseball, and this year he’s taken his game to a whole new level in an even bigger role,” Bloom said. “This place isn’t for everybody, but people who love being here, I think they recognize and see the Red Sox as more than just a place to play or a place to work, they see it as a family.”

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