David Ortiz expects Red Sox to re-sign Xander Bogaerts originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
David Ortiz remains hopeful Xander Bogaerts will don in a Boston Red Sox uniform for 2023 and beyond.
As Red Sox fans anxiously await the news of Bogaerts' free agency landing spot, Ortiz provided an optimistic outlook on the veteran shortstop's future in Boston.
"I expect them to come through and get this done," the Red Sox legend told reporters on Friday. "We don't want another situation like Mookie (Betts). A guy like that, such a good player who goes about everything like a professional in a place like Boston, he's a keeper."
Circumstances around Betts, however, were different. The Red Sox traded Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2020 after failing to reach an agreement on a long-term contract extension.
Ortiz's point still stands. Losing another homegrown star won't sit well with most of the fanbase, especially with All-Star third baseman Rafael Devers not yet signed to an extension as he approaches the final year of his Red Sox contract.
"Of course, the whole talk is about Bogey and Rafael, which I think those two guys are the base of this organization," Ortiz told MLB.com's Ian Browne. "You're definitely going to want to build around them."
Finding common ground with Devers only becomes more difficult if his close friend Bogaerts signs elsewhere. Judging by the recent rumors around Bogaerts' free agency, that nightmare scenario is looking more and more likely.
Longtime MLB reporter Peter Gammons reported earlier this week Bogaerts has "severed ties" with the Red Sox. Meanwhile, the two-time World Series champion reportedly has garnered interest from several clubs including the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago Cubs, and San Diego Padres.
If Bogaerts leaves, the Red Sox will have to find a way to fill the glaring void at shortstop. Carlos Correa, Trea Turner and Dansby Swanson are the other top options on the free-agent market. If no replacement is signed, second baseman Trevor Story could be asked to return to his former position.