The Red Sox signed Josh Beckett to a four-year extension, the team announced today. The deal, which is worth $68MM, pays Beckett a $5MM signing bonus and salaries of $15.75MM from 2011-14. The right-hander also has a clause blocking trades to three teams, two of which he can choose. After the 2011 season, Beckett should have ten and five rights which will allow him to veto any trade.
MLB.com's Ian Browne first reported the deal's value, after ESPNBoston's Gordon Edes suggested it would approach $70MM. Alex Speier of WEEI.com added the yearly breakdown (via Twitter) and Jon Heyman of SI.com explained the deal's no-trade protection (via Twitter).
As Heyman notes (via Twitter), the Red Sox save on luxury tax spending by completing the deal after the season's start. The extension gives the team control of Beckett, John Lackey, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz through 2014, as Speier notes (via Twitter).
Beckett was set to hit free agency after the season, so the contract averages out to $17MM per year for four free agent years. That's slightly less than what Justin Verlander and Felix Hernandez got for the free agent years covered under their newly-signed extensions. It's more per year than the $16.5MM Lackey signed for last winter and, unlike Lackey's contract, Beckett's deal doesn't include injury protection for the Red Sox, according to Edes.