In what has been a disappointing offseason for the Boston Red Sox, could the franchise now be losing its grip on one of the faces of its rotation in Nathan Eovaldi?
Boston Red Sox rumors: Red Sox “do not appear to be front-runners” to bring back Nathan Eovaldi
According to Rob Bradford of Boston’s WEEI, the 32-year-old Eovaldi is a hot name in the pitching free agent market, “drawing significant interest from multiple teams” who are looking to bring the right-hander on board.
Eovaldi came to Boston on July 25, 2018, in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays, with the Red Sox sending pitcher Jalen Beeks to the Rays in return. Eovaldi has been a part of the Red Sox rotation since that swap, appearing in 96 games (starting 84 of them) while posting an overall 4.05 ERA/3.73 FIP/1.269 WHIP and 113 ERA+. Eovaldi was given a qualifying offer by the Red Sox this offseason, which he declined, setting the stage on the potential to cash in on a bigger payday this winter. MLBTradeRumors.com has predicted him to land a two-year, $34 million deal before next season.
And that’s exactly what could happen for Eovaldi, who is being pursued by, according to Bradford, the Los Angeles Angels, San Diego Padres, and “at least one other club.” Additionally, Bradford teases that “one of the additional interested parties is an American League East club” in addition to the Red Sox, who are trying to retain him as rumors of a potential Chris Sale trade being to swirl. However, Boston doesn’t appear to be in the lead any longer to retain Eovaldi, Bradford writes.
Both the Angels and Padres have been active on the pitching front this offseason, but landing Eovaldi would certainly elevate either rotation. However, he was limited to just 109.1 innings last season because of shoulder and back issues. Can he bounce back in 2023? It appears plenty of MLB teams along with the Red Sox believe the answer to be yes.