Red Sox

Experts predict how much it will cost the Red Sox to re-sign Kyle Schwarber and Eduardo Rodriguez

Schwarber and Rodriguez are expected to receive a lot of interest as free agents.

Jim Davis/Globe Staff
Kyle Schwarber could get a big pay day this offseason.

The Red Sox learned Sunday that one of their top potential free agents would be staying when All-Star J.D. Martinez picked up his 2022 option, but a pair of their more impactful players have hit the open market.

Kyle Schwarber and Eduardo Rodriguez are free agents. Schwarber declined his mutual option earlier in November while Rodriguez became a free agent when his contract expired after the World Series.

Rodriguez did receive the one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer from the Red Sox on Sunday, which he has until Nov. 17 to accept before it goes away. Because the Red Sox acquired Schwarber at the trade deadline, he wasn’t eligible to receive the qualifying offer.


Rodriguez and Schwarber, who’ll each be 29 by Opening Day next season, are expected to garner a good amount of interest as free agents. Rodriguez already has a team showing interest and Schwarber is expected to be a big target with the universal DH likely to be implemented next season.

Here’s what experts project Rodriguez and Schwarber will sign for this offseason.

Eduardo Rodriguez

Jim Davis/Globe Staff
Eduardo Rodriguez went 13-8 with a 4.74 ERA last season.

MLB Trade Rumors: five years, $70 million

Ben Clemens, Fan Graphs: four years, $80 million

Fan Graphs Median Crowdsource: four years, $72 million

Fan Graphs Average Crowdsource: 3.81 years, $69.3 million

Kiley McDaniel, ESPN: three years, $51 million

All five of the contract projections for Eduardo Rodriguez are pretty consistent. They all are at least three years with an average annual value between $14 million and $20 million. If those projections are accurate, it appears it would be unlikely that Rodriguez would accept the qualifying offer as $50-plus million would be too much to pass on in comparison.

In MLB Trade Rumors’ projections, its three writers predict Rodriguez to leave Boston. Two of them predict he’ll sign with the Twins while the other predicts he’ll sign with the Tigers.

“We believe Rodriguez might surprise some people with a four or even five-year deal this winter, although Boston’s decision to issue a qualifying offer figures to put a dent in his market,” MLB Trade Rumors wrote of Rodriguez’s market. “We still believe teams not quite willing to pay $23-25MM AAVs for starting pitching might turn to Rodriguez, and he’s young enough to entice clubs that are trying to get better but don’t quite expect to win the World Series in 2022.”


While Rodriguez had a subpar 2021 season, writers like McDaniel project Rodriguez to bounce back in 2022. In 2019, Rodriguez had a career year going 19-6 with a 3.81 ERA to finish sixth in the Cy Young vote. After missing the 2020 season due to myocarditis, Rodriguez went 13-8 with a career-worst 4.74 ERA.

In addition to coming off the health scare, McDaniel believes Rodriguez was a bit unlucky in 2021, too, which could justify having to potentially pay Rodriguez a big price.

“Rodriguez has been a consistently good third-starter type, even if his outcomes this year were worse than normal because of a .363 BABIP — his career mark is .311,” McDaniel wrote. “He missed 2020 thanks to myocarditis tied to COVID-19 but appears totally back to his normal on-field self. I would expect a three- or four-year deal for $45-65 million.”

Ben Clemens also believes Rodriguez was “snakebitten” in 2021.

“Of the top 25 free agents, Rodriguez might be the least decorated — but he also might be the best bargain for a contender who believes in his peripherals,” Clemens wrote.

Rodriguez has already reportedly received interest from the Angels. If Rodriguez does leave Boston, the Red Sox will receive draft compensation because he received and declined the qualifying offer. The comp pick would likely come after Competitive Balance Round B.

Kyle Schwarber

Kyle Schwarber had a .291 batting average with seven homers and 18 RBIs in 41 games with the Red Sox. – The Associated Press

MLB Trade Rumors: four years, $70 million


Ben Clemens, Fan Graphs: four years, $60 million

Fan Graphs Median Crowdsource: four years, $60 million

Fan Graphs Average Crowdsource: 3.71 years, $55.2 million

Kiley McDaniel, ESPN: three years, $45 million

Jim Bowden, The Athletic: three years, $54 million

Like Rodriguez, all of the projections for Kyle Schwarber are pretty consistent. In fact, they’re almost identical. All six project Schwarber to receive at least a three-year deal with an average annual value between $15 million and $17 million.

Like they did with Rodriguez, all three of MLB Trade Rumors’ writers predict Schwarber to leave Boston. One has Schwarber going to Toronto, another has Schwarber going to Colorado, and a third has the slugger going back to D.C., where he was before the Red Sox traded for him.

“The potential addition of the DH to the NL would help Schwarber, who is ineligible for a qualifying offer,” MLB Trade Rumors wrote of Schwarber. “After out-producing Nick Castellanos on a rate basis, Schwarber should see a similar market as one of the best bat-first players available.  Castellanos has the more consistent track record and doesn’t have the history of platoon issues, so he gets the nod over Schwarber in terms of earning power for our list purposes despite a similarly productive 2021 season.”

Schwarber had the best season of his career in 2021. He hit .266/.374/.554 with 32 homers and 71 RBIs over 113 games with the Red Sox and Nationals, which earned him his first All-Star nod. McDaniel believes that with Schwarber’s strong season at the plate, teams will be willing to commit to him on multi-year deal even if he’s not a good fielder.


“Schwarber is a below-average but acceptable left fielder, so the coming universal DH can help his market, as did his career year at the plate,” McDaniel wrote. “His breakthrough season is supported by improved underlying metrics across the board, so a two-year deal at a big AAV or three-to-four-year deal in a lower-eight figure AAV makes sense. There are some on-field similarities to last winter’s four-year, $65 million deal for Marcell Ozuna, so that would be a high-water mark of sorts for Schwarber.”

The Athletic’s Jim Bowden believes the likely implementation of the universal DH will help Schwarber, too. Bowden lists the Red Sox and “All of the teams looking for a DH” as the best fits for Schwarber.

Because the Red Sox were unable to give Schwarber the qualifying offer, they won’t receive any compensation if he leaves. Schwarber did express a desire to stay following the Red Sox’ elimination in the ALCS.

“This is definitely a clubhouse that I could see myself wanting to stay in,” Schwarber said. “These guys are amazing. I said this, it’s two World Series teams going at it. This is a World Series clubhouse, and I would love to hopefully see if that opportunity comes back.”

Even if Schwarber and Rodriguez want to stay in Boston, it appears it’ll cost the Red Sox some dough.


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