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David Price is looking for a fresh start to his career with the Boston Red Sox after a controversy-filled 2017 season.
“I could’ve handled it better last year, absolutely. But I didn’t, and I’ve moved on,” the pitcher said Tuesday, per Scott Lauber of ESPN. “I feel like I’ve always been one to lead with my actions, and I didn’t do that very well last year. I know that and understand that, and I look forward to getting back and being that faucet and not being a drain.”
Price only made 16 appearances last season, including 11 starts, in a year shortened by injuries.
He first injured his elbow in spring training last season, keeping him off the field until May. The issue flared up again in July and that kept him out until returning as a reliever in September.
In the meantime, his attitude became an issue while getting into a fight on the team plane with Dennis Eckersley, who works as a team analyst for NESN. He also reportedly yelled at reporters at Yankee Stadium.
Price signed a seven-year deal with Boston before the 2016 season and has been solid on the field, producing a 3.84 ERA in the past two years. He also led the league with 230 innings pitched in 2016. Of course, this is still a bit of a disappointment for a pitcher with a 3.22 career ERA, five All-Star selections and a Cy Young award on his resume.
Adding in his off-field struggles, significant question marks have arisen about the 32-year-old’s future.
Price can opt out of his contract after the 2018 season, but he is owed $127 million from 2019-22 if he sticks with his current deal. Unless he stays healthy and produces career numbers, it will be difficult for him to match these type of numbers on the open market.
Considering Yu Darvish only signed for a reported average of $21 million per year, per Madeline Kenney of the Chicago Sun-Times, Price should know the best deal he will get will be to remain in Boston.