How will the Red Sox spend their money? And how much money will they have to spend?
With no answers regarding revenue, fans returning or many other elements involving the economics of Major League Baseball in 2021, it remains a mystery.
But there was one piece of the offseason puzzle that Chaim Bloom might have shined a little light on during his Tuesday press conference.
The Red Sox won't shy away from trying to extend some of their key players.
"It’s going to be a different offseason but I wouldn’t at all rule out the possibility of us engaging with players on long-term deals," said the Red Sox Chief Baseball Officer. "That’s something if we did it, it’s something we would do our best to keep in-house unless there’s an agreement. But I think as long as there’s mutual interest and a mutual fit, I don’t see why we wouldn’t look into it and pursue it."
There are two obvious candidates for the Red Sox when it comes to contract extensions: Rafael Devers and Eduardo Rodriguez.
The Red Sox went into last offseason with the intention of talking with Devers about an extension, with the third baseman's service time lining up with Houston's Alex Bregman when he agreed to a five-year, $100 million extension.
But no agreement was reached, leaving Devers with the opportunity to head into his first offseason of arbitration-eligibility.
Rodriguez represents more urgent, albeit uncertain, case.
The pitcher who is still recovering from Myocarditis, but is expected to be participating in a normal offseason, will be eligible for free agency after the 2021 season.
So why the Red Sox' approach to free agency remains in flux, it appears at least one of the piece of their financial approach this offseason is in place.
"I think it’s one of the big questions this offseason for all 30 clubs," Bloom said. "I think it starts in the course of the next month, to prepare for the beginning of the offseason, to make sure a) that we have all our information together, to where we have a pretty good idea of how we assess players so we can make quick decisions. That’s not different from a normal offseason. Then it will just be going through different scenarios for what the market could yield. I think we find that even though we might have expectations for what it will be, every offseason bears surprises.
"Last offseason there were contracts that ended up getting signed that I thnk people wouldn’t have predicted at the start of the offseason. I think it’s dangerous to say at the beginning of a winter that we know what it’s going to look like because you may end up being wrong. I think we just need to have our information in place, make sure we’re ready to adjust. We go into an offseason as we usually would do, make sure we’ve had contact with every club, know what they’re looking for, how we might be able to fit into their plans. That will also help us make decisions on free agents. We just need to make sure our information is in a good place."