On Tuesday, teams had to decide by 8:00 PM ET whether or not they would be tendering contracts to their arbitration-eligible players. By tendering a deal, which the Red Sox did with six of their eight arbitration-eligible players (they agreed to terms with Ryan Brasier and non-tendered Tim Locastro), the players remain in the organization, but they do not have defined salaries as of yet. The two sides can either negotiate a deal (almost always for one year, though longer-term extensions can be done as well) or head to an arbitration hearing where a neutral panel will pick a salary. Now, most of the work with these players will be in avoiding arbitration.
That’s what they did with Brasier, and on Wednesday they have done it with Kevin Plawecki as well. The team announced Wednesday morning that they agreed to terms on a one-year deal with their backup catcher. Alex Speier of the Boston Globe is reporting that Plawecki will earn $2.25 million for 2022, which comes in $250,000 higher than the MLB Trade Rumors projected salary.
Plawecki will come back for next season likely playing a very similar role to the one he played in 2021, which is as a backup to Christian Vázquez. This was Plawecki’s second season with the Red Sox, and he had a good year at the plate, hitting .287/.349/.389 for a 102 wRC+ over 64 games and 173 plate appearances. The defense is average-at-best and the offense relies heavily on batted ball luck, which likely precludes him from attaining an everyday role at this point in his career, but he is a very solid backup as he proved this past season. That said, he does have a pair of young catchers in Connor Wong and Ronaldo Hernández who are just about ready to take over a major-league role, so if he gets off to a slow start the leash may be shorter than it had been the previous two seasons.
With this deal done, the players who were tendered contracts but have not yet agreed to terms are Christian Arroyo, Rafael Devers, Nick Pivetta, Hunter Renfroe, Josh Taylor, and Alex Verdugo.