There was a time when the Red Sox were very careful to announce extensions after Opening Day. Players who hammered out the parameters of long-term deals in spring training but waited until after the first day of the season to announce them included David Ortiz, Coco Crisp, Josh Beckett, Clay Buchholz and Adrian Gonzalez.
The reasoning was sensible enough. If the extensions had become official prior to the start of the season, then the players’ salaries for the season for which they were under contract would be recalculated for luxury tax purposes. So, for instance, in 2011, Adrian Gonzalez made $6.3 million. Had his seven-year, $154 million extension become official when the Sox traded for him from the Padres or during spring training, his deal would have been treated as an eight-year, $160.3 million pact — meaning a luxury tax figure of just over the average annual value of $20 million a year. By waiting until mid-April to announce the deal, Gonzalez counted for just $6.3 million in 2011 — thus saving the Sox millions in luxury tax penalties that year.
That history created an expectation that, if the Sox reach agreements with David Ortiz (who is making $15 million in 2014 but who counts for $17 million against the luxury tax) and Jon Lester (who is making $13 million in 2014 on a team option, but whose luxury tax figure is approximately $9.37 million), they wouldn’t be announced until after the start of the regular season to avoid a potential luxury tax hit.
The new Collective Bargaining Agreement, which took effect starting in the 2012 season, eliminated the recalculation of a contract’s AAV as a result of an extension. So long as the second deal does nothing to alter the terms of the first, the two contracts are treated as separate.
So, if the Sox reach agreement with either player on an extension starts in 2015 and doesn’t alter what they’re owed for the coming season, then those new deals won’t alter the player’s salary as calculated for luxury tax purposes. If Ortiz agrees to a one-year extension, regardless of whether it’s for $15 million or $1 billion, his 2014 AAV would remain $17 million for the purposes of calculating the Sox’ luxury tax this year. Similarly, as long as a deal with Lester wouldn’t take effect until 2015, then the team could announce it tomorrow or in June with no difference in its implications for the 2014 payroll — the left-hander will count for $9.37 regardless of the timing of the announcement.
Even with that alteration, and despite the fact that a resolution of extension talks is expected before the end of spring training, that doesn’t necessarily mean that an announcement will happen in Fort Myers. The Sox may well decide that, if they reach agreement with either player, they’d prefer to save the announcement for the start of the regular season, most likely in Boston. Or perhaps it won’t be until the start of the regular season that the two sides will be able to finalize the details of an extension — if one is coming at all.
But regardless, the timing of any announcement won’t be driven by luxury tax implications. That aspect, at least, of extension strategy is now a thing of the past.
* – (WEEI.com was guilty of propagating the misunderstanding that an extension could alter a luxury tax hit for a season if announced prior to Opening Day. We regret the error.)
Head Coach Bill Belichick on Patriots Monday
Former Patriot Heath Evans, now with the NFL Network, joins Dale, Holley and Thornton every Monday for a thorough analysis of the Patriots and the NFL. This week we break down the shutout of Houston, and look ahead to the Bills.
We check in with safety Patrick Chung for a brief visit on Patriots Monday and discuss the win over Houston, and the upcoming game against the Bills.
Sam Packard is joined by Celtics 2nd Round draft pick Abdel Nader to discuss his path to the the NBA and how he plans to improve his game. Sam then talks to Player Development Coach Nick Friedman from Elite Skills Training, the pre-Draft camp Nader attended. Friedman also gives his opinion on the Celtics performance at summer league and the development of Jaylen Brown.
Isaiah Thomas talks to Glenn and Lou about why he loves Boston, the NBA Money Bump, oh, and some Durant guy
Danny Ainge joins Glenn and Christian to explain the Celtics draft process; and he also discusses the trade rumors that permeated the night.
Rob Bradford is joined by former Red Sox, and current Cubs, catcher David Ross, who admits to joining teammates Jon Lester, John Lackey and many members of the Chicago front office in at least contemplating the idea of a Red Sox vs. Cubs World Series. Ross also compares his retirement tour to David Ortiz's, reveals stories of clubhouse celebrations, while suggesting that Lester is pitching better than ever.
Dale, Michael and Jerry speak with Sox slugger David Ortiz in his final regular season week of his career. We touch on the 2016 Sox heading into the playoffs, retirement, memories and Jose Fernandez.
Joe and Tim talked to the Sox catcher, who caught 23 strikeouts from Sox pitchers in the extra-inning win in Tampa Bay.
Joey Mac joins Ken Laird on his Saturday show to discuss the David Backes addition and Loui Eriksson departure in NHL free agency
DJ and Pete continue to assess the season that was for the Bruins and look toward the future for the franchise and how they can improve.
DJ and Pete are together for the final Sunday Skate of the season. They get into their overall thoughts on the season, the Bruins keeping Claude Julien on as head coach and the end-of-season press conferences last week. They discuss the rebuild process, what the Bruins need and how they can obtain it. Plenty of callers have their own theories and opinions on all of these topics as well.
The 6am hour upload from Monday with Mike Mutnansky in with Kirk and Gerry, with first thoughts from the guys on several of the big weekend stories in sports
Who is more important, Brady or Belichick? Tim Hasselbeck is pissed at Kirk and Gerry and Dan Le Batard cried.
Mut, Gerry and Kirk discussed a column ripping Ortiz and Kirk is pissed at Curtis.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian invite Anthony L. Fisher of "The Week" on the show to explain his article where he discusses why David Ortiz is a jerk and a fraud.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian are slightly taken aback by Peter King's Monday Morning Quarterback article where Paul Brown, not Bill Belichick is named the greatest Coach of all time.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian discuss the Jimmy G vs. Brady conundrum, and then delve into the atrocious AFC.
We sit down with the head coach of the Patriots Bill Belichick to break down the win over Houston, and look ahead to the Buffalo Bills this Sunday.
Kirk Minihane sits down with the Boston Globes Sports Media Columnist, Chad Finn. Kirk and Chad talk about the long and storied feud between WEEI and the Boston Globe and the ongoing ratings war between WEEI and the Hub.
Kirk and Gerry talk about how the show is going since the departure of John Dennis, how the fill-in hosts have been doing so far, and what they are looking for in a third host.
Kirk Minihane loves TV and movies, he sits down with TV critic and author of the new book "TV (The Book)" Alan Sepinwall to discuss the best TV shows of all-time and which show should be number 1. Kirk and Alan disagree on which show is the best of all-time and they both have compelling arguments. Kirk and Alan talk about "Cheers" being one of the most underrated and forgotten TV shows of all-time.
Thomas and Conor give a breakdown of the BC-Wagner game this weekend and look forward to next week's Buffalo game.
Christian Fauria and Dr Gill talk about Andrew Benintendi's knee sprain and what that will mean going down the stretch, David Ortiz's ability to keep himself healthy at age 40, and how Pablo Sandoval can return from his season off.
After another big win for the Pats on Thursday night, New England rejoices so Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson get their thoughts in on the game, the Pats future at Quarterback and the difference between the Patriots organization and everyone else. Then the conversation turns to Fantasy Football featuring the slew of injured Runningbacks and who you need to get and start in their place, including Jerrick McKinnon, Charles Simms and Theo Riddick. The boys wrap it up with a look at solid Starts & Sits from RB to WR to TE. Something for every Fantasy Footballer and Football fan. Make sure you join Jim and Pete on Sunday at 8:00am for the WEEI Fantasy Football Hour.
Mut, Gerry and Kirk discussed a column ripping Ortiz and Kirk is pissed at Curtis.More from this show
Patriots Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels joined the show to discuss the teams big win over the Texans and his future as a NFL head coach.More from this show