Red Sox

McAdam: With Sale's arrival, Sox set to ship out other starting pitchers

McAdam: With Sale's arrival, Sox set to ship out other starting pitchers

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- Now that they've done with additions, it may be time for the Red Sox to start subtracting.


Having obtained reliever Tyler Thornburg, starter Chris Sale and first baseman/DH Mitch Moreland, the Red Sox have addressed all of their obvious roster needs in one hectic day at the annual winter meetings.


President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski confirmed that the team is through looking for bullpen help, and the position players -- and reserves -- are all accounted for.

But the acquisition of Sale leaves the Red Sox with a total of seven established starting pitchers on their major league roster -- likely one too many.

"There's really not room for seven starters,'' conceded Dombrowski. "We also have three guys we like behind that - (Henry) Owens, (Roenis) Elias and (Brian) Johnson. So we're pretty deep in that regard at this point.

"As you know, you never have enough pitching. That's the old adage. But I would say that (moving one of the established starting pitchers) is something we'd at least be open-minded about.''

It just so happens that the Red Sox starting pitching surplus coincides with a particularly thin free agent class. Rich Hill, at 36 and with a ominous injury history, was the best starter available, but signed Monday with the Dodgers for three years, $48 million.

That leaves a mediocre group that is headed by Ivan Nova and a handful of other back-end arms.

The most logical starter for the Red Sox to market would be Clay Buchholz, since moving him would also relieve the team of his $13.5 million salary.

In other winters, the Sox might have to subsidize that salary in order to attract any bidders. But given that Buchholz would almost certainly earn more than that figure were he a free agent, it's likely the Sox can move Buchholz and his salary, too.

If Buchholz doesn't attract bidders, the Sox have an excess of lefthanders in the rotation and could move Drew Pomeranz. Pomeranz is under control for two more seasons and being lefthanded won't hurt his marketability.

It's doubtful that the Sox would be tempted to shop Eduardo Rodriguez, since he makes virtually no money and at, 23, has the highest upside of any of the pitchers not named Sale, David Price or recent Cy Young winner Rick Porcello.

It may behoove the Sox to wait before moving a starter, since the longer they wait, the more teams could become desperate for rotation upgrades.

Kimbrel returns to Red Sox after daughter's heart surgery

File photo

Kimbrel returns to Red Sox after daughter's heart surgery

All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel returned to Fort Myers on Sunday after his 4-month-old daughter underwent successful heart surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital, and the Red Sox are confident he'll be ready for Opening Day.

“Oh, yeah. Plenty,” manager Alex Cora replied when asked if Kimbrel had time to get ready for the March 29 opener against the Rays in St. Petersburg. “With him it’s a different schedule, anyway. He’ll be ready.”

Kimbrel's daughter, Lydia Joy, was born with a heart defect. He left the team Feb. 28 to be with her and his family in Boston, but pitching coach Dana Levangie said Kimbrel was on a pitching program during that time.

“The most important thing is that the family is okay with [Kimbrel returning to the Sox],” Cora said. “If they’re okay with it, we’re okay with it.”

The Baseball Show Podcast: Should we be confident in the Red Sox rotation?

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The Baseball Show Podcast: Should we be confident in the Red Sox rotation?

0:21 - With less than two week before the beginning of the 2018 season, the Red Sox don’t have all of the answers for their rotation. Lou Merloni and Evan Drellich project their Opening Day rotation and discuss the lack of depth in it.

4:39 - Will Boston’s version of the ‘Killer B’s’ return in full force this season? Lou and Evan analyze the performances of Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Andrew Benintendi.

10:07 - Buy or sell? John Farrell will find another managerial position this season; J.D. Martinez will have a better season than Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton; Dave Dombrowski has put the best possible team out there for 2018.