December 2, 2015 / 12:26 AM / in 2 years

Red Sox sign ace Price to record deal: report

(Reuters) - The Boston Red Sox have agreed to a record seven-year, $217 million contract with left-handed pitcher David Price, one of the top starting pitchers available in the free agent market, The Boston Globe reported on Tuesday.

Oct 23, 2015; Kansas City, MO, USA; Former Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher David Price throws a pitch against the Kansas City Royals in the first inning in game six of the ALCS at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Price went 18-5 with a 2.45 earned run average in 32 starts for the Detroit Tigers and Toronto Blue Jays last season.

The 30-year-old Price, who won the Cy Young Award winner as the top pitcher in the American League in 2012 with the Tampa Bay Rays, is 104-56 with a 3.09 ERA over eight seasons and has been named to five All-Star teams.

The deal would be the largest ever for a pitcher, narrowly topping Clayton Kershaw’s $215 million extension with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2014.

Price was considered the top pitching target this offseason along with Zack Greinke, who spent last season with the Dodgers.

It has been a hectic couple of seasons for Price.

Price was dealt by Tampa Bay to the Tigers at the 2014 trade deadline and spent one calendar year with Detroit, going 13-8 with a 2.90 ERA before the club fell out of contention and sent him to Toronto for three prospects at last season’s deadline.

The hard-throwing lefty went on to play a big role in propelling the Blue Jays to their first playoff berth since 1993. Price was 9-1 with a 2.30 ERA in 11 starts as Toronto charged to the American League East title.

Former Detroit president and general manager Dave Dombrowski was fired five days after making that trade and has since joined Boston as their president of baseball operations.

One cloud over Price has been his postseason record.

Despite all his regular season success, he is 2-7 with a 5.12 ERA in 14 career playoff games.

Price has good memories of pitching at Boston’s Fenway Park, going 6-1 with a 1.95 ERA in 11 career starts there.

The signing is the second major move this offseason by Boston to bolster a pitching staff that combined for a 4.39 ERA last season, third highest in the American League.

Last month, the Red Sox traded four prospects to San Diego for closer Craig Kimbrel.

Reporting by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Frank Pingue

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