Red Sox

Rafael Devers, Red Sox reportedly have differing views on third baseman’s worth

More details surrounding spring discussions about a long-term extension have been revealed.

John Tlumacki/Globe Staff
Rafael Devers saunters around the bases after a home run against the Angels in May. He already has 22 at the All-Star break, tied for ninth-most in MLB.

As Rafael Devers prepares to start in Tuesday night’s MLB All-Star Game, more details surrounding spring discussions with the Red Sox about a long-term extension have been revealed.

Back in April, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that there was a “significant, significant chasm between what Devers wants and what the Boston Red Sox at this point have been willing to offer.”

Now, Alex Speier of the Boston Globe has offered more details on the situation, writing, “According to a major league source familiar with the talks, the Red Sox identified Matt Olson’s eight-year, $168 million extension with Atlanta as a basis for discussions — citing the likelihood that Devers would spend much of the contract either at first base or designated hitter.”

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According to Speier, “Devers aimed much higher, convinced in his ability to stay at third for the immediate future while making the case that his offense would make him immensely valuable even if he eventually moves to first or DH.”

Those around the league have weighed in on what a potential contract for Devers might look like, with ESPN MLB Insider Buster Olney telling WEEI’s pregame show last week, “I think Devers’s contract – if you look at the type of player that he is, the age (25) that he is, I think you’re looking at a $300 million contract.”

Devers has certainly continued to argue his case on the field this year, slashing .324/.379/.601 with 22 home runs and 55 RBI while leading the American League with 112 hits and showing some improvement on defense.

Devers’s offensive numbers so far this year exceed Olson’s in almost every category while playing the typically more expensive third base (though Olson is a 2x Gold Glove winner at first). For further comparison, Devers is well on pace to surpass Olson’s age-25 season offensive numbers as well.

While Devers and the Red Sox still have another offseason to come to an agreement on an extension, the immensity in the gap between what the two sides have reportedly asked for is not ideal. Coupled with the current state of the Xander Bogaerts contract situation, it seems the Red Sox have a lot of work to do if they want to keep their stars.

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