Red Sox Sign Millwood


With two of their starters heading to the disabled list this week, the Boston Red Sox have signed pitcher Kevin Millwood to a minor league deal.

Millwood made three starts for the New York Yankees AA and AAA clubs this season before opting out of his contract.  The deal allowed the 36 year old to leave the team if he did not reach the majors by May 1st

Millwood spent last season in Baltimore where he logged 190.2 innings, finishing the year with a 5.10 ERA.

Though he has only maintained an ERA below 4.00 in 4 of his 14 seasons, Millwood has always been considered a durable pitcher.  The right hander has started at least 21 games a season since 1998, making 30 or more starts 10 times during that span.

The Red Sox have gotten solid contribution from their top three starters, all entering Thursday with ERAs below 3.50.  The trouble has been the bottom of the rotation, previously manned by injured pitchers John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka.  The two have ERAs over 5.00, with Lackey’s ballooning to 8.01 in most recent start.

The team hopes their two veterans can return from their DL stint resembling the pitchers Boston knows they can be.  In the meantime, the Sox are relying on a 44 year old and a former Mexican League player with a grand total of 5 major league starts to fill out their rotation.

With this being the case, the move to bring in Millwood absolutely makes sense.  It offers the team some insurance on the cheap.  Even if Millwood wasn’t very impressive earlier this season, he still gives the Sox someone with major league experience that can give the team starts.

I’m sure Boston hopes they don’t have to count on Millwood this season, but with the early showings of Lackey and Dice K and the replacements the Sox have lined up, it certainly won’t hurt to have the former All Star a phone call away.