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David Price didn't ask the Red Sox for his opt-out clause

That doesn't mean he'll never use it, but still.

Photo by Cliff McBride/Getty Images

The assumption with opt-out clauses in contracts is that they exist so a player can invoke them, then search for more money on a new contract. It might be with the team they're with, it might be with a new team, but players don't get opt-outs unless they plan on using them if their career is in a place where they can do so.

That's what makes David Price's opt-out with the Red Sox after the 2018 season a little curious, as he apparently didn't ask for the opt-out that came with his seven-year, $217 million deal. Rob Bradford learned as much while speaking with Price down in Fort Myers.

Three years is a long time, but you have to start the conversation somewhere. That's why if we use Price's early approach toward the opt-out clause in his contract, there is a tendency to buy into his current commitment.

"Oh, no," he said when asked if he was the one who asked for an opt-out.

"I think that's just kind of the new way to do things these days. It's been the trend over the past couple of years. I don't even think I knew about it. I didn't ask all the specifics when [agent] Bo [McInnis] had told me we had reached an agreement. This is how it goes."

So, what we can pull from this is that Price personally did not ask for an opt-out, so he's not necessarily thinking about how great it would be to get paid for three years by the Sox then get paid even more by them or by someone else once it's opt-out time. His agent is likely the one who got that opt-out put in, though, which means his agent will also be letting him know about the wonders of opting out three years from now, should Price still resemble the Price that got him $217 million in the first place.

The Sox agreed to the opt-out for what we can assume are a number of reasons. For one, Price's agent probably wasn't going to let someone sign his client without getting one, as it is, in Price's words, the "way to do things these days." So, you get Price for maybe just three years, or you get him for zero -- and the Sox might have actually shaved off some dollars from the annual and total cost of the deal by agreeing to the opt-out, too.

Then there is the timing of the opt-out. Were Price to leave after 2018, the Sox would have had essentially all of his early 30s to themselves, and could let someone else take care of the rest. This would be happening at the same time as what might very well be the greatest free agent class in history: one that is poised to feature both Bryce Harper and Jose Fernandez. So, the Sox will have options if Price signs elsewhere, as Zack Greinke did this winter after opting out of his Dodgers' deal. Or they could end up simply redoing the last four years of Price's deal after an opt-out, and hold on to him at a more updated rate.

Shorter opt-out talk: it's too early to really know Price's intentions or what kind of pitcher he'll be by the time his opt-out comes around. What we do know right now, though, is that he's at least open to the idea of sticking around -- to match Pedro Martinez's seven seasons in Boston, per Bradford -- past that date. That's not news, necessarily, given he did agree to a seven-year deal, but it's still comforting to know not every opt-out is considered as a necessary means of escape.

Now let's just enjoy the guaranteed three years the Sox have with Price and worry about the rest later.