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Red Sox sign Grady Sizemore to a big league deal worth $750,000

Jan 22, 2014, 6:42 PM EDT

Detroit Tigers v Cleveland Indians Getty Images

WEEI’s Rob Bradford is reporting that the Red Sox are in agreement with outfielder Grady Sizemore on a one-year Major League deal worth $750,000. He can earn an additional $5.25 million with incentives. We learned earlier that Sizemore was moving on from the Reds, who had been heavily pursuing him.

Sizemore, 31, hasn’t played in the Majors since 2011 and hasn’t played a full season since 2008 due to an array of injuries and surgeries. A timeline:

  • June 4, 2010: Left knee surgery
  • July 21, 2011: Sports hernia surgery
  • October 3, 2011: Right knee surgery
  • March 1, 2012: Lower back surgery
  • September 15, 2012: Right knee surgery

It’s a good deal for both sides. Sizemore gets a chance to breathe life into his career, and the Red Sox add outfield depth on the cheap. Sizemore still has the potential to be a very productive player, which isn’t the case for the few remaining outfielders on the free agent market.

It is surprising that the Red Sox gave Sizemore a Major League deal considering his injury history. That said, even if Sizemore is unable to stay healthy or can’t perform, it would only be a loss of $750,000 — a drop in the bucket for the Red Sox.

Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the Sox have designated Brayan Villareal for assignment to make room for Sizemore on the roster.

  1. mianfr - Jan 22, 2014 at 6:59 PM

    *cut to a video of Ben Cherington literally flushing one pile of money down the toilet and John Henry setting a separate pile on fire*

    • christos99 - Jan 22, 2014 at 11:29 PM

      I totally disagree “mianfr,” I think that this is a awesome low-risk, high-reward contract. I think this is a great signing. I wish my club had signed him to this contract!

      I wish a former 3 time All-Star, Sizemore a great, healthy season and luck. Have you seen this dude’s defensive numbers???

      • mianfr - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:51 AM

        Ken Griffey Jr. played 100 games in a season as recently as Grady Sizemore has, and he’s a 13 time All-Star, former MVP, and was once a defensive whiz himself.

        Maybe they should sign him to a low-risk major league contract too?

      • takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jan 23, 2014 at 8:29 AM

        Griffey is 44, Sizemore is 31. Your analogy sucks.

  2. tfbuckfutter - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:04 PM

    Well he may not replace Jacoby’s bat but he will definitely replace the hole he frequently left in the lineup.

    • gsk422 - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:53 PM

      Lol you think Sizemore will stay healthy good one!

      • tfbuckfutter - Jan 22, 2014 at 9:03 PM

        Please, join me in my web.

        I’ve so much for you to discover.

      • anotheryx - Jan 23, 2014 at 12:06 PM

        Someone failed reading comprehension test

  3. titknocker - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:27 PM

    Better get this guy a Delorean!!!

  4. leylandshospicenurse - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:34 PM

    Crazy that they assume a guy who hasn’t played in years can play without being sent to AAA. Guess Colon did it as a pitcher so it’s possible

    • dan1111 - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:22 AM

      If only there were some kind of multi-week training program, including practice and actual games against major league players, that he could go through before the season started to get ready.

  5. wilkisoft - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:47 PM

    The Red Sox must know something we don’t. It’s a low risk/high reward sitatuion, but I don’t see his ceiling being that high. In fact, it’s low enough that he’ll hit his head on it and end up on the DL.

    • baseballisboring - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:53 PM

      Their outfield is already set with Nava/Gomes, Bradley Jr. and Victorino. Really, he’s Bradley Jr. insurance with some upside, that’s all. IF (and that’s a monumental if) he can stay healthy he’ll be an asset. If not then oh well.

    • tfbuckfutter - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:56 PM

      We had Nomar and Trot and then Jacoby.

      Jacoby left, so you gotta replace him with someone who will attract most of the injuries leaving the rest of the roster relatively healthy.

      Think of his as a rabbit’s foot. A mangled rabbit’s foot that an amateur taxidermist made on his first try out.

  6. NYTolstoy - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:47 PM

    This is what makes me scratch my head…the guy hasn’t played since 2008 without an injury and they give him a MAJOR LEAGUE deal and he can earn up to 6 million? Yet it’s hard for people to except that Santana will get a major league deal with the possibility of winning up to 10 mil??? All these signings say other wise

    • dan1111 - Jan 23, 2014 at 4:27 AM

      I do think Santana will get a major league deal (and have said so). However, previously you were implying he would get 10 million or more guaranteed. That’s very different from an incentive-laden deal like this one.

      • NYTolstoy - Jan 23, 2014 at 5:53 AM

        Guaranteed or not. I was implying a team will give him the opportunity to earn up to 10-14 mil. Of course not all guaranteed but atleast some of it will. Everyone was arguing with me that he will get a minor league deal and so on. These signings make me say otherwise

  7. metalhead65 - Jan 22, 2014 at 9:31 PM

    since when is making 750,000 a low risk?so much for it all being about getting one more chance for sizemore as once again comes down to the money. thank God the reds did not cave to his demands.they will be lucky if he makes through a day of workouts with pulling or breaking something, hell they will be lucky if he does not tear his rotator cuff signing the contract.

  8. pastabelly - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:15 PM

    I hope he earns $6 milion. The $750K “ante” is such low risk that the downside is next to nothing (unlike the downside of signing closers who are frequently injured).

  9. xpensivewinos - Jan 23, 2014 at 12:46 AM

    It’s not like the Red Sox signed him with the hope or expectation he’s going to be the heart and soul of their team. Assuming he can still play, he adds some quality depth. If not, they cut him. Absolutely no downside.

  10. ejannetta - Jan 23, 2014 at 6:51 AM

    LMAO!..Sizemore hasn’t played in 2 years and is always injured….Looks like the Sox are going cheap this year….Sox should look into Nick Johnson to fill in at 1st base…So this is how the Red Sox counter the Yankees signing Tanaka….forgetaboutit.

  11. takemytalentstosoutheuclid - Jan 23, 2014 at 8:27 AM

    This is a good signing by Boston. Getting a former all star for under $1mil, especially for a team with tons of dough to spend, is a no brainer. The biggest issue, as mentioned, are the multiple injuries. Sizemore’s game was based on his speed, whether we are talking defense or baserunning, this is what set him apart. He has now had 3 knee surgeries, including the microfracture surgery, and has not, at least not yet, been able to regain his burst. Time will tell, I guess.

  12. stackers1 - Jan 23, 2014 at 8:35 AM

    I can’t believe that he’s only 31. This is not a bad deal for the Bosox.

  13. chunkala - Jan 23, 2014 at 9:41 AM

    Flash forward 8+ months, Sizemore has a near career year, ESPN and MLBN go nuts over Sizemore’s resurgance, though never acknowledging that playing 81 games in Fenway would greatly boost any players numbers.Mark it down, comment back to me if I’m wrong by October. Fenway Effect in full effect here. Vaughn, Napoli, Bay, Sizemore, the list will go on.

    • oopsnofacts - Jan 23, 2014 at 12:00 PM

      Napoli had better numbers away from Fenway last year. His batting average was 20 points higher, his slugging was 50 points higher.

      Fenway didn’t make a huge difference for Jason Bay’s numbers either. In 2008 he had a slightly higher average and OBP away from Fenway, but a slightly higher slugging percentage at Fenway. In 2009 it was the reverse.

      Only Vaughn had significantly better numbers at Fenway.

  14. jcmeyer10 - Jan 23, 2014 at 10:10 AM

    Kind of one of those ‘why not’ signings.

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