The Boston Red Sox will get a second go with left-handed starting pitcher James Paxton in 2023.
On Wednesday, Paxton officially opted in, exercising his player option with the Red Sox worth $4 million for the 2023 season. After battling Tommy John Surgery recovery last season, Paxton did not make his debut appearance in a Red Sox uniform. He last took the mound on April 6, 2021, as a member of the Seattle Mariners.
However, Paxton’s agent, Scott Boras, revealed the motive for the southpaw electing to remain in Boston.
“He’s very comfortable,” Boras said, as transcribed by Alex Speier of The Boston Globe. “He felt the best thing at this point in his career is for him to stay with the people he’s been with. … The consideration wasn’t really economic. It was comfort.”
With the Red Sox entering the offseason with three of their pitchers who logged high-inning totals — Rich Hill, Michael Wacha and Nathan Eovaldi — becoming free agents, Boston has various looming questions regarding their starting staff before next season.
During his final full season of action in 2019, Paxton went 15-6 with a 3.82 ERA, striking out 186 hitters as a member of the New York Yankees.