The sides settled for $14.575 million, the midpoint between what Ortiz had asked for and what the Red Sox offered. The Red Sox offered $12.65 million (a slight raise from his $12.5 million salary in 2011) and Ortiz had asked for $16.5 million.
“It just one of those things that when we all had everyone in the room together it just made sense that we would get to the midpoint and get it done,” Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said, according to the Boston Globe.
Asked if Ortiz was happy, Cherington told reporters: “You have to ask him, but he seemed to be.”
Ortiz was at the same hotel as Cherington in St. Petersburg, Fla., according to the newspaper, but left without commenting.
Cherington said that the team “made that clear again to him” that the team wanted him to return.
Ortiz’s agent, Fernando Cuza, told reporters that “both sides are very happy with the deal and we’ll leave it at that. This is a process and once we got together and talked it out it made sense to get a deal done and move on.”
Ortiz had been seeking a multiyear deal, but Cuza would not comment on whether that subject was broached in discussions with the team.
Ortiz had one of his best seasons in years in 2011. He batted .309 with 29 home runs, 96 RBIs and a .952 OPS.
A team source told ESPNBoston.com’s Gordon Edes that the Red Sox remain actively interested in pitcher Roy Oswalt, but the Ortiz settlement won’t be a factor in whether he comes. “Roy just needs to figure out where he wants to play,” the source said.
Ortiz, Red Sox agree to deal before arbitration
ESPN.com – MLB
Latest MLB news from ESPN.com