Now the Yankees can’t force him to shave that ugly chin-beard
The Red Sox and Josh Beckett are close to an agreement on a contract extension for the ace pitcher of 4-years and $70 million which is expected to be announced next week according to Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated.
This means that he will not be apart of next year’s free agent class. Combine this news with the fact that Arizona Diamondbacks’ pitcher Brandon Webb is further behind in rehabbing his right shoulder than anyone expected means that instead of a free agent class stocked with high talent pitchers Cliff Lee will be the only big name most teams would be willing to risk a long-term deal on.
With no other major options other than Lee on the market, the Yankees will probably have more competition than they expected for the services of the dominating lefty. So this could drive up his asking price as the supply is lower. It also takes away a reasonable ‘Plan B’ should the Yankees fail to garner mutual interest and sign Lee.
Although it is doubtful that they would have actually signed Beckett, the idea that he won’t be out there for other teams like the Mets to be distracted by is not good for the Yankees. Although maybe now the Red Sox won’t target Lee.