The Rangers and Red Sox have discussed a trade that would send second baseman Rougned Odor to Boston for right-hander Nathan Eovaldi, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News tweets. It’s unclear whether the trade would include Texas taking on extra money or if prospects would be in the deal, according to Grant.
Odor, who’s making a prorated $9MM in 2020, is in the fourth season of a six-year, $49.5MM contract that includes a remaining $27MM. The deal also features a $13.5MM club option for 2023, but the way Odor’s career has gone, his employer’s sure to buy him out for $3MM. When Odor signed his pact in 2017, he was coming off back-to-back 2.5-fWAR seasons, but he has seldom revisited that form since then. In fact, going back to the first season of the contract, Odor has slashed a less-than-stellar .216/.281/.412 with 81 home runs, 38 stolen bases and 0.6 fWAR across 1,853 plate appearances. His 17 wRC+ this season over 86 trips to the plate ranks next to last among 224 hitters who have amassed 80-plus PA.
Eovaldi, whom the Red Sox acquired from the Rays in 2018, was one of their many standouts during their run to a World Series that year. He was on the cusp of free agency at the time, but his down-the-stretch success convinced Boston to hand him a four-year, $68MM contract during the ensuing offseason. Unfortunately for both sides, though, the move hasn’t gone well. Eovaldi, 30, missed a large portion of last season with injuries and, despite 97 mph velocity and 8.65 K/9 against 1.57 BB/9, hasn’t done well to keep runs off the board this year. Overall, he has pitched to a woeful 5.65 ERA/5.45 FIP in 102 innings since landing his big payday. He’ll be due another $34MM after this season, and his annual $17MM luxury tax bill is another negative for a Red Sox team trying to avoid the line, as Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe notes. Odor’s CBT bill comes in at a much more palatable $8.25MM.
Should this change-of-scenery swap go down, the Red Sox would be landing a potential second base starter who’s still just 26. The injury-plagued Dustin Pedroia has barely been a factor since 2018, and he may never play again because of knee issues. And his year’s primary second base options – Jose Peraza and Jonathan Arauz – have mustered weak production. Meanwhile, Eovaldi would at least give the Rangers another arm in a rotation that’s in flux. The Rangers just parted with Mike Minor in a trade with the Athletics on Monday, and it appears Lance Lynn could also move before the 3 p.m. CT deadline.