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Red Sox Rumors: Chris Martin, BOS Agree to 2-Year, $17.5M Contract in MLB Free Agency

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIDecember 2, 2022

Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Chris Martin works against a San Diego Padres batter during the sixth inning in Game 4 of a baseball NL Division Series, Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

The Boston Red Sox and right-handed relief pitcher Chris Martin agreed to a two-year, $17.5 million contract Friday, pending a physical, per ESPN's Jeff Passan.

The 36-year-old Martin dominated for the Los Angeles Dodgers after the Chicago Cubs dealt him prior to the 2022 trade deadline in August.

He posted a 1.46 ERA and 0.53 WHIP while striking out 34 batters in 24.2 innings over 26 appearances for the National League West winners.

Last year was Martin's seventh MLB season. The veteran has pitched for the Colorado Rockies, New York Yankees, Texas Rangers, Atlanta Braves, Cubs and Dodgers.

The Red Sox sorely need bullpen help after their relievers combined for a 4.59 ERA in 2022, which was the second-worst mark in the American League.

It appears that the Red Sox got their pitcher, with Jamie Gatlin of ABC News 4 reporting that he was their top bullpen target.

Jamie Gatlin @JamieGatlin17

Chris Martin was the Red Sox’s top free-agent reliever target, per source.

Martin, who issued just one walk with the Dodgers, should be able to help.

Mike Petriello @mike_petriello

Wrote about Chris Martin the other day, who seemed terminally underrated to me. Guess he's not anymore. <a href="https://t.co/YNOnFHcN2W">https://t.co/YNOnFHcN2W</a> <a href="https://t.co/KJV3oHzHt9">pic.twitter.com/KJV3oHzHt9</a>

Tyler Milliken ⚾️ @tylermilliken_

Red Sox have signed reliever Chris Martin to a 2-year deal worth $17.5 MM, per <a href="https://twitter.com/JeffPassan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JeffPassan</a>.<br><br>Absolutely love this move. The FO emphasized getting arms in the bullpen that didn’t put guys on base.<br><br>3.05 ERA/2.18 FIP in 2022 with a 11.9 K/9 and 0.8 BB/9.<a href="https://t.co/nEJ8sUESX1">pic.twitter.com/nEJ8sUESX1</a>

Ian Cundall @IanCundall

Chris Martin is a good fit for the Red Sox bullpen. 2022: 56 IP, 3.05 ERA, 0.98 WHIP, 74 K:5 BB. Throws strikes, misses bats &amp; late innings experience. This will be his second stint w/Boston also, as he was signed out of Indy Ball in 2011 &amp; reached AAA before being traded in 2013

Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic noted how this is a good contract for Martin, who threw a pair of scoreless innings in the playoffs.

Fabian Ardaya @FabianArdaya

Good deal for Chris Martin. Had wondered if his dominance down the stretch would result in a multi-year pact, and the market definitely was there. <a href="https://t.co/1xflVuKO0T">https://t.co/1xflVuKO0T</a>

This is Martin's second go-around with the organization. After a year in independent ball (2010), Martin signed with the Sox and rose from Single-A to Triple-A before Boston traded him to the Rockies.