On Wednesday, we heard from Gordon Edes that Boston's final offers to Jacoby Ellsbury had come in at $100 million over five years, or six years and under $120 million. Now it seems even those numbers may have been high. Very high according to Rob Bradford and Ken Davidoff:
Can confirm RT @KenDavidoff I hear the #RedSox's talks with Jacoby Ellsbury didn't get beyond the $80 million (over 5 years) range— Rob Bradford (@bradfo) December 5, 2013
You might say Boston packed his bags for him.
$100 million over five years is, if certainly not the best offer, one that sounds fairly reasonable. That was probably a realistic low-end for Ellsbury's market given the price of free agents these days. $80 million over five? That's just stunningly low. It comes out to $16 million per year for arguably the second best free agent in a top-heavy market.
It's hard to imagine the Red Sox had any real expectation Ellsbury might return on that sort of a deal. Perhaps they were in it nominally, offering Boras only what they'd be willing to pay and allowing him to use their involvement, actual figures aside, to drive up the price for suitors like the Yankees.
If so, it might have worked. The Yankees' final offer of $153 million over seven years is as shockingly high as Boston's offer was low.