Boston Red Sox have Rafael Devers backup plan lined up

Sep 13, 2022; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Justin Turner against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 13, 2022; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers designated hitter Justin Turner against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Boston Red Sox are facing a great deal of uncertainty regarding the future of Rafael Devers. On Sunday, they found a backup plan.

Rumors had begun to circulate earlier in the day that the Red Sox were interested in Justin Turner. That deal came together just hours later, as ESPN’s Joon Lee reported that Turner signed in Boston. Jeff Passan added that it is a two year deal worth just under $22 million and includes an opt-out after the 2023 season.

Boston Red Sox cover bases with Justin Turner signing

At this point, the plan is that Turner will spend most of his time as the Red Sox designated hitter or at first base. Triston Casas is penciled in at first but still needs to prove himself. J.D. Martinez, the Red Sox designated hitter over the past five years, is heading to the Dodgers. There would appear to be plenty of at bats in that role, at least until the Red Sox realize that Masataka Yoshida should not be allowed anywhere near the outfield.

This signing also appears to send another message. By adding Turner to the roster, it would appear that the Red Sox do not have much confidence in an extension with Devers happening. Although Turner has that opt-out clause, he could be their backup plan at third, coming to the roster a year early as was the case with Trevor Story.

It is also possible that Turner sets the Red Sox up for another move. If they feel that an extension is not going to happen, it is possible that they look to trade Devers before they lose him for nothing. Signing Turner to a contract makes that possible.

Adding Turner on a two year deal could also help the Red Sox as they look to their future. Third base prospect and noted home run hitter Blaze Jordan is expected to make his major league debut in 2024, although he may be more likely to make an impact at the major league level in 2025. Should the Red Sox be able to keep Turner for both years of this contract, he could help bridge that gap.

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The Boston Red Sox have signed Justin Turner to a two year deal with an opt-out after 2023. His signing could mean that Rafael Devers is out the door.