Red Sox agree to terms with Ellsbury and Aviles on one-year contracts

BOSTON, MA - The Boston Red Sox today agreed to terms with outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury and infielder Mike Aviles on one-year, non-guaranteed contracts for the 2012 season, thus avoiding salary arbitration.  Terms were not disclosed.

The announcement was made by Executive Vice President/General Manager Ben Cherington.    

Ellsbury, 28, was named American League Comeback Player of the Year and finished second in AL MVP voting after batting .321 (212-for-660) while setting career-highs with 46 doubles, 32 home runs, 119 runs, 105 RBI and 52 walks in 158 games with the Red Sox last season.  He led the Majors with both 364 total bases and 83 extra-base hits, and also ranked among American League leaders in hits (3rd), runs (3rd), doubles (T-3rd), stolen bases (4th, 39), average (5th), OPS (5th, .928), home runs (T-5th), slugging percentage (6th, .552) and RBI (T-6th).  A first-time All-Star in 2011, he was just the fourth player in Major League history to accumulate at least 200 hits, 30 home runs, 100 RBI and 35 stolen bases in a season, and the first Red Sox ever with at least 30 homers and 30 stolen bases in a single campaign.  He also received his first Silver Slugger and Rawlings Gold Glove Awards after the season.  Selected by the Red Sox in the first round (23rd overall) of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft, Ellsbury has compiled a .301 career average (611-for-2,032) with 106 doubles, 23 triples, 52 home runs, 235 RBI, 341 runs and 175 stolen bases in 507 Major League games with Boston over the last five seasons from 2007-11.

The 30-year-old Aviles was acquired by Boston from Kansas City on July 30, 2011 and hit .317 (32-for-101) in 38 games for the Red Sox while making appearances at third base (22 games), shortstop (8), second base (7), right field (4) and left field (1).  The right-handed batter combined for a .318 clip (27-for-85) overall against left-handed pitching between the Royals and Red Sox last year.  Originally selected by the Royals in the seventh round of the 2003 First-Year Player Draft, Aviles has hit .288 (360-for-1,249) with 63 doubles, 11 triples, 26 home runs, 130 RBI and 172 runs in 339 Major League games over parts of four seasons with Kansas City (2008-11) and Boston (2011). 

With today’s agreements, designated hitter David Ortiz and right-handed pitchers Alfredo Aceves, Andrew Bailey and Daniel Bard are the remaining unsigned Red Sox players eligible for salary arbitration.