The Jason Varitek-Boston Red Sox saga has been occasionally baffling this offseason, as the two sides have failed to come to any sort of a consensus on how valuable Varitek actually is.
After the Sox offered the veteran catcher arbitration, and Varitek turned it down, it seemed like all was lost. Why on Earth would the Red Sox offer 'Tek a two-year deal? Why on Earth would Tek turn down a perfectly good one-year offer? It's been a bit of a confusing mess, but it appears -- mercifully -- to be approaching its end.
At the very least, Varitek and his agent, Scott Boras, are thinking about a deal, according to Tony Massarotti at the Boston Globe. The offer is a one-year deal for $5 million with a team option for a second year at $3 million. The upside is that Varitek would be getting paid money to play baseball for the Red Sox, ostensibly for two years. The downside is that if he has a really good 2009, he can't hit the open market for a final big one-year deal. Now Varitek might be better off just taking a one-year deal ... sort of like the one the Red Sox initially offered. Whoopsies.
In any case, it'd probably be wise for Varitek to take the money and return to his team. He has no leverage here, and his skills are basically limited to those sorts of intangible things that don't really make one money unless one's name is David Eckstein; it's probably best that Varitek make use of those intangibles -- which his teammates clearly respect -- and get back on the Red Sox with haste. He's not getting any younger. The Red Sox aren't getting any dumber. Take the deal, Jason.
And that advice was free. How much are you paying Boras, again?