Beckett, Crisp agree with Sox on deals

Beckett, Crisp agree with Sox on contracts

BOSTON -- The Red Sox have successfully avoided salary arbitration with their last two eligible players.

The club announced Monday they have agreed to terms on 2006 contracts with right-hander Josh Beckett and outfielder Coco Crisp.

Beckett settled for $4.25 million this season according to The Associated Press, splitting the difference in what the two sides were seeking. Meanwhile, Crisp reportedly settled for $2.75 million, also the middle ground. Crisp made $365,000 last season and is under Boston's contractual control through the 2009 season.

Acquired from the Marlins in a seven-player trade on Nov. 24, the 25-year-old Beckett is 41-34 with a 3.46 ERA in 106 Major League appearances, with all but three coming as a starter. Since breaking into the big leagues with the Marlins at age 21 in 2001, Beckett has matched or improved his total number of wins, starts, innings pitched and strikeouts in every season.

Beckett had his best year in 2005, finishing 15-8 with a 3.38 ERA. And in becoming one of only 11 National League pitchers to win at least 15 games, he established career highs in wins, starts (29), innings pitched (178 2/3) and strikeouts (166), while ranking among league leaders in strikeouts per nine innings (tied for seventh with 8.4), opponents' batting average (ninth at .234), winning percentage (T-9th at .652) and ERA (11th).

Crisp, also 25, set career highs in nearly every offensive category in 2005, recording a .300 batting average with 42 doubles (tied for fifth in the American League), 16 home runs, 86 runs scored, a .345 on-base percentage and .465 slugging percentage in 145 games played. He was acquired from the Indians with right-hander David Riske and catcher Josh Bard on Jan. 27. The six-foot, 180-pound switch-hitter had 15 stolen bases in 21 attempts, marking the third consecutive season he has stolen at least 15 bases.

Since breaking into the big leagues with the Indians at age 22 in 2002, Crisp has improved his batting average and total of home runs, doubles and runs scored in every season.

Mike Petraglia is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.