Boston Red Sox – MLB Trade Rumors 2020-08-10T01:50:23Z WordPress Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Red Sox Option Ryan Weber, Call Up Dylan Covey]]> 2020-08-08T17:32:43Z 2020-08-08T17:15:17Z The Red Sox have optioned right-hander Ryan Weber to their alternate training site, as per a team announcement.  Recently-acquired righty Dylan Covey has been called up to take Weber’s spot on the MLB roster.

The 2020 season has been a struggle for Weber, who has a 9.90 ERA over three starts and only 10 innings pitched.  Weber has allowed five home runs over that brief sample size, as well as nine walks and only three strikeouts.  Clearly the Sox had been enough to continue with Weber as a starting pitcher, as strapped as Boston is for arms.

It was due to this pitching shortage that Weber found himself in the rotation in the first place, after working as a reliever for 31 of his 42 Major League appearances prior to this season.  Weber had only a 5.04 ERA and 5.7 K/9 through 114 1/3 innings from 2015-19, though his strong ability to generate grounders and limit hard contact gave the Red Sox some hope that he could at least tread water as a regular starter.  Weber’s grounder rate is down to only 40% this season, however, and opposing batters are teeing off to the tune of a 54.8% hard-hit ball rate.

Covey might step right into Weber’s rotation spot, though while the 28-year-old righty brings more experience as a starting pitcher, he also has a rather shaky track record.  Covey posted a 6.54 ERA, 6.2 K/9, and 1.52 K/BB rate over 250 1/3 innings with the White Sox from 2017-2019, also posting some solid ground-ball rates and exhibiting some problems with the long ball (1.6 HR/9).  Over 63 appearances for Chicago, Covey started 45 of those games.

The Red Sox acquired Covey from the Rays just a few days prior to their July opener, and he made one relief appearance for Boston before being sent to the alternate training site.  That one outing didn’t go particularly well, as Covey gave up two earned runs over two innings in Boston’s 7-2 loss to the Orioles on July 25.

Steve Adams <![CDATA[Red Sox Release John Andreoli, Add Seth Blair To Player Pool]]> 2020-08-07T17:19:53Z 2020-08-07T17:19:53Z The Red Sox have released outfielder John Andreoli in order to open a spot in their 60-man player pool for right-hander Seth Blair, per a team announcement. Blair will join the club’s alternate training site.

Andreoli, 30, is a Worcester native with 26 games and 67 plate appearance of big league experience under his belt. That all came back in 2018, when he hit .230/.284/.262 in a small sample with the Mariners and Orioles. Lack of big league experience aside, Andreoli is a solid depth piece for big league clubs given a career .262/.375/.416 slash in nearly 2500 Triple-A plate appearances. He’s also logged more than 2000 minor league innings at all three outfield positions and racked up 259 minor league stolen bases. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him latch on with a club hurting for outfield depth.

Blair, meanwhile, is something of a remarkable story. The 31-year-old was selected by the Cardinals with the No. 46 overall pick of the 2010 draft and looked to have washed out of baseball after an ugly season in 2014. Blair didn’t throw a professional pitch from 2015-18 but was given a chance at a comeback by the Padres organization in 2019. He spent the year with San Diego’s Class-A Advanced affiliate, and while his 4.11 ERA doesn’t stand out as a particularly impressive mark, Blair also notched an impressive 47-to-14 K/BB ratio in 35 frames. Now that he’s in Boston’s player pool, he’s closer to an improbable big league debut than he was at any point in 2019.

TC Zencka <![CDATA[Minor MLB Transactions: 8/1/2020]]> 2020-08-02T02:33:55Z 2020-08-02T02:33:55Z It’s been a busy sports day with the NBA and NHL back in action, not to mention the many MLB games still underway. As the action rolls along, we’ll use this post to review some minor moves you may have missed…

  • Catcher Jonathan Lucroy has been assigned to the Red Sox alternate training site in Pawtucket after clearing waivers, per Alex Speier of the Boston Globe (via Twitter). He’ll stay in their 60-player pool after catching a total of two innings behind the plate for the big-league team. Lucroy, 34, has enjoyed a long and productive career, but a steep dropoff in production following his second All-Star appearance in 2016 has led to a meandering period for the veteran receiver. In addition to the Red Sox, Lucroy has dressed for the Cubs, Angels, Athletics, Rockies, and Rangers since coming to semi-stardom with the Brewers.
  • The Cubs signed pitcher Matt Dermody out of the Independent League, per USA Today’s Bob Nightengale (via Twitter). Everyone is in need of extra pitching depth these days it seems, though the Cubs have a particularly unsettled situation in their bullpen. Dermody is a 30-year-old southpaw who last appeared in the majors in 2017 for the Blue Jays. He made 23 appearances that season, going 2-0 with a 4.43 ERA/6.25 FIP across 22 1/3 innings. Cubs relievers have been the worst such group in the game so far this season. Prior to Saturday’s action, they pitched to a combined 9.55 ERA/9.51 FIP across 21 2/3 innings.
  • The Giants assigned catcher Rob Brantly to their alternate training site, per The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly (via Twitter). The 31-year-old catcher cleared waivers after appearing in one game for the Giants, going hitless in three at-bats. Tyler Heineman and Chadwick Tromp are the catchers that remain on San Francisco’s active roster.
George Miller <![CDATA[Eduardo Rodriguez Out For Season]]> 2020-08-01T21:52:00Z 2020-08-01T20:56:24Z Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodriguez has been shut down for the 2020 season as a result of the myocarditis he has experienced following a bout with COVID-19, according to Alex Speier of the Boston Globe. While the Red Sox are confident that Rodriguez will make a full recovery in the long term, his heart issues have persisted and will prevent him from pitching this season.

Since going on the injured list in early July due to COVID-19, Rodriguez has dealt with mild heart inflammation that developed as a result of the illness. Thankfully, the condition hasn’t negatively affected the function of Rodriguez’s heart, though it has not subsided to the point where he’s expected to recover in time to pitch this year.

Needless to say, the outlook for the Red Sox rotation sans Rodriguez is a rather bleak one. Even with the 27-year-old southpaw in the mix, the rotation looked like a thin unit, but it was certainly a bit more inspiring than the patchwork unit Ron Roenicke will henceforth have to count on. With Chris Sale on the shelf for the year, Rodriguez was expected to shoulder a bigger load atop the Red Sox rotation, which currently consists of Nathan Eovaldi, Martin Perez, Ryan Weber, and Zack Godley.

Rodriguez emerged as one of the hottest pitchers in baseball late last year, authoring a career-best season on virtually every measurable front. He posted his best marks yet in wins, innings pitched, strikeouts, and ERA. And if that wasn’t enough reason to be excited for another year of progress, he was at his best in the final month of the season, averaging 12.7 K/9 over his last six starts—his highest rate in a single month of his five-year career (minimum three starts).

Of course, the focus right now shouldn’t be on the on-field consequences of Rodriguez’s absence, but on his long-term health and recovery. We hope to see E-Rod make a swift return to full health and back on the mound in 2021. For now, his situation is a reminder that even young, world-class athletes are not immune to complications from COVID-19.

Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Latest On Darwinzon Hernandez, Josh Taylor ]]> 2020-08-01T04:33:45Z 2020-08-01T04:33:45Z
  • Pitching has been a problem for the Red Sox early this season, but a couple of their hurlers are on the way back from the COVID-19 injured list. Left-handers Darwinzon Hernandez and Josh Taylor could join the Red Sox sometime within the next week, Chris Cotillo of writes. The 23-year-old Hernandez reached the majors for the first time last season and struck out a ridiculous 16.91 hitters per nine across 30 1/3 innings, though a horrid 7.71 BB/9 helped lead to a below-average 4.45 ERA. Taylor, 27, somewhat quietly notched a 3.04 ERA/3.11 FIP with 11.79 K/9 and 3.04 BB/9 in 47 1/3 frames as a rookie.
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    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Latest On Eduardo Rodriguez ]]> 2020-07-31T04:52:37Z 2020-07-31T04:52:37Z The Mets are off to a slow start at 3-4, and high-profile reliever Edwin Diaz hasn’t helped matters. Diaz, whom the Mets hoped would rebound this year after a subpar first season with the team in 2019, has allowed an earned run in two of three appearances this year. He struggled Thursday in a loss to the Red Sox, allowing four of five hitters to reach base. Afterward, manager Luis Rojas told Anthony DiComo of and other reporters that Mets bigwigs will discuss whether to use Diaz in high-leverage situations going forward. Considering Diaz has only thrown 2 1/3 innings this season, it’s far too soon to say he won’t bounce back. Nevertheless, it’s stunning to see how far he has fallen off since a tremendous run with the Mariners from 2016-18. The Mets’ decision to trade for Diaz and second baseman Robinson Cano continues to look worse and worse.

    • Red Sox left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez has been out this season because of coronavirus complications, but chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom told Greg Hill of WEEI on Thursday (h/t: Chris Cotillo of that they believe he will pitch this year. “We do expect to get him back,” Bloom said. “I couldn’t tell you exactly when. Obviously, we’re fortunate in that the complication that he had was very mild in terms of the severity of it.” Rodriguez went on the injured list July 7 after testing positive for the virus and has been dealing with a heart issue related to the illness lately. If healthy, he’ll unquestionably be the No. 1 starter in a Boston staff that’s rife with problems.
    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Red Sox Moving Zack Godley To Rotation ]]> 2020-07-30T05:35:13Z 2020-07-30T05:35:13Z
  • The Red Sox, having gotten poor production from their patchwork rotation thus far, will give righty Zack Godley an opportunity as a starter, Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald tweets. Godley, whom the Red Sox signed to a minor league contract this month, will make his first start with the club on Saturday against the Yankees. The former Diamondback and Blue Jay was an effective starter just a couple years ago before falling off dramatically last season. Godley had an extremely encouraging long-relief appearance Monday, though, as he tossed four scoreless, four-hit innings with seven strikeouts against no walks in a loss to the Mets.
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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Red Sox Designate Jonathan Lucroy, Call Up Chris Mazza]]> 2020-07-29T20:03:45Z 2020-07-29T16:14:27Z 3:03pm: Lucroy has been designated for assignment.

    11:14am: The Red Sox will remove catcher Jonathan Lucroy from their roster today and call up right-hander Chris Mazza from their alternate training site in Pawtucket, Chad Jennings and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic report (via Twitter). The exact nature of the move isn’t clear. It’s possible that Lucroy will simply be designated for assignment, though it’s also conceivable that he could be shipped to another club with a need for catching depth.

    Lucroy, 34, cracked Boston’s Opening Day roster as a third catcher behind Christian Vazquez and Kevin Plawecki, but he’s yet to tally a plate appearance with the Sox. He split the 2019 season between the Angels and Cubs, hitting at a combined .232/.305/.355 rate in 101 games and 328 plate appearances.

    More than three full years have passed since Lucroy enjoyed his last above-average season at the plate, but for a time, he was considered to be among the game’s elite backstops. From 2012-16, Lucroy batted .291/.353/.465 (120 OPS+) while drawing elite framing marks and registering a solid 27.5 percent caught-stealing rate. Those days, however, have long since passed. Over his previous three seasons, Lucroy has combined for a .248/.315/.350 output as his defensive ratings have tumbled considerably.

    In his place, the Sox will add the 30-year-old Mazza — an offseason waiver claim out of the Mets organization who has just 16 1/3 MLB innings under his belt. While Mazza doesn’t have much big league experience, he turned in a 3.67 ERA with 7.3 K/9 against 2.1 BB/9 in 76 Triple-A frames last year — particularly solid marks given the offensive explosion there. Mazza has an overall ERA of 3.72 or better at every individual minor league level and has a composite 3.21 ERA with 7.4 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9. He’s regularly posted excellent ground-ball mark as well, thanks to a heavy sinker that has one of the lowest spin rates in MLB (which, in the case of sinkers, is a good thing).

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Alex Wilson Retires]]> 2020-07-29T03:44:51Z 2020-07-29T03:44:51Z Former major league right-hander Alex Wilson has retired, Robert Murray reports. The 33-year-old will join the Ballengee Group as an advisor, per Murray.

    Wilson, a second-round pick of the Red Sox in 2009, debuted in 2013 and generated solid results with Boston over a combined 56 innings through 2014. But Wilson wasn’t long for the Red Sox, who traded him to Detroit after the 2014 campaign in the teams’ Yoenis CespedesRick Porcello swap. Wilson went on to enjoy a successful stint as a member of the Tigers, with whom he was a durable and effective reliever.

    Wilson amassed 264 2/3 innings and pitched to a 3.20 ERA with 5.8 K/9 against 2.1 BB/9 as Tiger from 2015-18, but they non-tendered him heading into last season. He saw his final major league action in Milwaukee, where he was tattooed for 12 earned runs on 15 hits in 11 1/3 frames. Although the Tigers brought Wilson back last offseason on a minor league contract, they ended up releasing him in June.

    While his career didn’t end in ideal fashion, there’s no denying Wilson had a more productive MLB career than most. He’ll depart with 332 innings of 3.44 ERA ball and 6.1 K/9 against 2.4 BB/9. MLBTR wishes Wilson the best in his next venture.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Predict The AL East Division Winner]]> 2020-07-28T00:56:11Z 2020-07-28T00:56:11Z With final roster decisions in the books and the 2020 season underway at long last, it’s time to make some predictions. We’re polling the MLBTR readership on each of the game’s six divisions — though plenty more teams will crack the postseason under the rather inclusive new playoff qualification system. We’ve already surveyed the AL CentralNL Central, and NL East landscapes, and now we’ll turn to the American League East.

    The Yankees have certainly been tabbed the favorite by most observers, but several key players have questionable injury histories and the short-season format opens the door for challengers. The Rays are perhaps the prime contender for a surprise, with a deep and versatile roster that’s far more talented than the payroll would suggest. Then again, we may all be overlooking the Red Sox, who have certainly shed some talent but still have several rather high-ceiling players. There’s a ton of young talent on the Blue Jays roster; maybe the team could surprise if those precocious performers develop ahead of schedule. It’s quite difficult to make a case for the Orioles, even in a pithy blurb, but … hey, they’re tied for the division lead at 2-1 entering play today!

    Which team do you think is going to take the division title? (Poll link for app users.)

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Red Sox Claim Robert Stock]]> 2020-07-26T22:17:09Z 2020-07-26T22:17:09Z The Red Sox have claimed right-hander Robert Stock off waivers from the Phillies, as per a team press release.  Philadelphia designed Stock for assignment earlier this week.

    Stock represents the latest new arm in Boston’s organization, as the Sox have also added the likes of Zack Godley, Dylan Covey, and Stephen Gonsalves in recent days in an attempt to shore up a pitching staff thinned by injuries, COVID-related absences (i.e. Eduardo Rodriguez) and opt-outs (Collin McHugh).  The Red Sox have optioned Stock to their minor league training site, though it isn’t hard to imagine him getting a call to the MLB roster at some point, as the Sox continue to figure out their optimal bullpen mix.

    The hard-throwing Stock has a 4.11 ERA over 50 1/3 career innings, all as a reliever, and all with the Padres from 2018-19.  After posting a 2.50 ERA in 39 2/3 frames in 2018, Stock struggled to a 10.13 ERA over 10 2/3 innings last season as his walk rate and homer rate both ballooned, and he also hit the injured list with a biceps strain in September.

    Stock was a second-round pick for the Cardinals in the 2009 draft, though he pitched for a few different organizations (as well as stints in Mexico and independent baseball) before finally reaching the Show in 2018.  The 30-year-old has a 3.74 ERA, 1.54 K/BB rate, and 8.5 K/9 over 327 career minor league innings, working as a reliever in 210 of his 217 appearances.

    Anthony Franco <![CDATA[Red Sox Select Zack Godley]]> 2020-07-26T15:07:21Z 2020-07-26T14:39:40Z The Red Sox announced they have selected right-hander Zack Godley to their 40-man and active rosters. Fellow right-hander Dylan Covey has been optioned to their minor league training site to clear active roster space. Their 40-man roster now sits at 39 players.

    Boston signed Godley to a minor-league deal shortly after he was released by the Tigers at the outset of Summer Camp. Godley didn’t immediately command a 40-man roster spot, but it always seemed likely he’d get a look on an uncertain pitching staff. The 30-year-old turned in a pair of productive seasons as a starter with the 2017-18 Diamondbacks. Combined, he tossed 333.1 innings of 4.10 ERA ball with a solid combination of strikeouts (24.7%), walks (9.4%) and groundballs (51.6%).

    The wheels fell off completely in 2019. Between Arizona and Toronto, Godley turned in a 5.97 ERA in 33 appearances (9 starts) with dramatic declines in his strikeouts and grounders. Along the way, Godley’s lost some velocity on both his cutter and sinker. Given his somewhat recent respectable track record, though, it’s easy to see why the Red Sox are willing to give him another look. Their current top four starters- Nathan EovaldiMartín PérezRyan Weber and Matt Hall– hardly inspire a ton of confidence.

    Covey, too, is a recent addition to the pitching staff, having been acquired from the Rays on Tuesday. The three-year White Sox starter threw two innings in relief in yesterday’s loss to the Orioles.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Eduardo Rodriguez Dealing With Heart Issue Related To COVID Diagnosis]]> 2020-07-26T02:10:26Z 2020-07-26T02:06:21Z The COVID-related health problem that led the Red Sox to shut Eduardo Rodriguez down for a week is related to his heart,’s Rob Bradford reports.  “There seems to be a strong possibility” that Rodriguez is suffering from the inflammation of the heart muscle known as myocarditis, which has been observed in multiple patients recovering from COVID-19.

    Rodriguez tested positive for the coronavirus prior to the start of Boston’s summer camp and had a rough time dealing with symptoms, as he told reporters.  However, he was cleared to join his teammates on July 17 and seemed to be on track to miss relatively little time at the start of the season prior to the setback.

    Any heart problem is naturally cause for concern, and while the specifics of Rodriguez’s setback weren’t known earlier in the week, Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke said at the time that the left-hander’s “minor complications” were enough for the club to take it as cautiously as possible with Rodriguez.  Roenicke did said that he expected E-Rod to pitch at some point in the 2020 season and that “we’re really hopeful that this is going to clear up in a short time.”

    Such a scenario would obviously be great news both for Rodriguez’s health and for the thin Red Sox pitching staff, which could sorely use the lefty back atop the rotation.  2019 saw Rodriguez enjoy the finest of his five MLB seasons, as he finished sixth in AL Cy Young Award voting and posted a 3.81 ERA, 2.84 K/BB rate, and 9.4 K/9 over 203 1/3 innings.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Red Sox Claim Stephen Gonsalves]]> 2020-07-25T22:49:30Z 2020-07-25T22:24:06Z The Red Sox claimed left-hander Stephen Gonsalves off waivers from the Mets, as per a team press release.  Gonsalves has been optioned to Boston’s minor league training site.

    The Mets designated Gonsalves for assignment earlier this week, ending the 26-year-old’s tenure in New York without so much as a big league pitch after Gonsalves was claimed off waivers from the Twins last November.  Gonsalves’ lone taste of MLB action came with Minnesota in 2018, as he posted a 6.57 ERA over 24 2/3 innings (starting four of seven games).

    Originally drafted by the Twins as a fourth-round pick in 2013, Gonsalves has a impressive 2.50 ERA, 2.67 K/BB rate, and 9.6 K/9 over 612 career minor league IP, though much of that success came at the lower levels.  Walks were a bit more of an issue for Gonsalves at the Triple-A level, with a 4.9 BB/9 over his 125 frames at the highest rung on the minor league ladder, though he still managed a 3.46 ERA at Triple-A Rochester.

    Gonsalves will now join a Red Sox club that is in need of any sort of pitching help, so another call to the majors might not be too far away.  Darwinzon Hernandez and Josh Taylor are both recovering from positive COVID-19 tests, however, so the Sox will be getting southpaw bullpen reinforcements back in hopefully short order.  With Gonsalves’ addition, Boston has now maxed out its player pool at 60 men, and has 38 spots filled on its 40-man roster.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Eduardo Rodriguez Shut Down For “Minor Complications” From COVID-19]]> 2020-07-23T17:23:53Z 2020-07-23T17:23:53Z Red Sox hurler Eduardo Rodriguez will take a step back from his effort to return from a bout of COVID-19, manager Ron Roenicke tells reporters including’s Ian Browne (Twitter link). Rodriguez is said to be dealing with “minor complications” from the virus.

    It’s obviously not clear what specifically is ailing Rodriguez, who has continued to test negative for an active infection. Roenicke says the club is taking the measure to ensure that Rodriguez clears out any nagging issues relating to the disease.

    Thankfully, it seems there’s ample confidence that Rodriguez will make a full and rapid recovery. The skipper says that all believe he will be able to resume pitching and make it back to the majors this year. Nevertheless, it’s a sobering reminder that this illness isn’t necessarily a non-event, even for otherwise exceptionally healthy young athletes.