Red Sox principal owner John Henry confirmed the obvious Tuesday: Boston would like to keep Mookie Betts around for a long time.

The Boston Globe’s Peter Abraham exchanged emails with Henry on the eve of the Red Sox’s series against the New York Yankees at Fenway Park, and Betts’ status with the organization was among the topics discussed. Betts is under contract through the 2020 season, but Henry told Abraham the club has made it clear to the All-Star right fielder it would like to sign him to a long-term contract.

“Yes, over the last two off-seasons,” Henry wrote, per Abraham. “I wanted to ensure that Mookie knew personally how important he is to us and to our future.”

Betts admitted recently he’ll be keeping tabs on how much fellow superstars Manny Machado and Bryce Harper earn on the open market this offseason. The deals those two players land could have huge ramifications on upcoming free agents, including Betts.

Betts has shown a preference to go year by year with his contract leading up to free agency, though, and Henry told Abraham he did not want to elaborate further on ownership’s intentions for the 25-year-old with the Red Sox in a pennant race. So, it might be a while before the sides engage in serious discussions.

In any event, it’s abundantly clear the Red Sox don’t want Betts going anywhere for the foreseeable future, which makes sense given his status as one of the best players in Major League Baseball.

Thumbnail photo via Troy Taormina/USA TODAY Sports Images