World Series MVP Steve Pearce is returning to the Red Sox in 2019. The free agent reached agreement on a one-year deal for the 2019 season on Friday. According to a major league source, he’ll earn a base salary of $6.25 million for next season. His standard awards package includes a bonus should he be named World Series MVP again.
The Red Sox acquired Pearce from the Blue Jays on June 28 in exchange for Santiago Espinal. The 35-year-old immediately proved a terrific fit in Boston, hitting .279/.394/.507 in 50 regular-season games, including a .302/.433/.585 line against lefties.
He then forged a place in a historic Red Sox season with a standout postseason performance, starting 11 of the team’s 14 playoff games while hitting .289/.426/.658 with four homers. He concluded that run by hitting a .333/.500/1.167 line with three homers against the Dodgers in the World Series.
Pearce was acquired as a righthanded complement to first baseman Mitch Moreland, who is entering the second season of a two-year, $13 million deal. Pearce’s return gives the Sox someone capable of once again offering an impact bat off the bench against lefties while permitting minor leaguers Michael Chavis and/or Sam Travis a chance to continue their development in Triple A.
“We’re thrilled to have Steve back with us for another year as we think he’s a great fit for our club,” said Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski. “Obviously, we all saw what kind of impact he can have on the field, especially with the postseason that he had. He also provides good depth and balance from the right side for us.”
Though Pearce hails from Lakeland, Fla., where he attended the same high school as Chris Sale, he comes from a family of New Englanders. He described himself as “brainwashed as a kid” into being a passionate Patriots fan, and he and his family seemed to relish his time in Boston, contributing to his candor about his desire to return to the Red Sox.
“That’s something I leave it up to my agent to do, but myself personally, I would love to come back,” Pearce said prior to the Duck Boat Parade. “This has been a fun year. I’d love to do it again next year.”
Now, he will have that opportunity.