Red Sox

Dave Dombrowski: Red Sox may stand pat after trading for Andrew Cashner

Dave Dombrowski: Red Sox may stand pat after trading for Andrew Cashner

The Boston Red Sox made a move on Saturday afternoon to bolster their pitching staff. They traded a couple of minor league players to the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for Andrew Cashner.

Cashner, a 10-year veteran, has posted a more-than-solid 9-3 record and 3.83 ERA while pitching for the woeful Orioles. He should fix the issues the team has had with the fifth starter since Nathan Eovaldi went down with an elbow injury in mid-April.

However, it's possible that the addition of Cashner may be the only move that the Red Sox make this year. The team's president of baseball operations, Dave Dombrowski, said as much in a press conference before Saturday's loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

“We might (stand pat),” Dombrowski said per's Chris Cotillo. “I think it’s one of those where we’ll analyze and see what takes place. I know a couple of our (relievers) worked a lot before the break. We weren’t getting a lot of innings from our starters. We think the rest, perhaps, will help some of them. When you look out there, there’s a good core of guys we like.”

This is hardly a definitive statement from Dombrowski, but it does seem that he continues to have faith in the team's bullpen. He was also quick to point out the return of Eovaldi in a bullpen role as being a big addition for the team.

"We are going to add Nathan Eovaldi," Dombrowski said per The Eagle-Tribune's Chris Mason. "For some reason, people seem to, not, like, grasp on to that. He’s a big addition for us coming and we feel he’ll be ready to go within about a week to join us on a full-time basis out there."

Eovaldi has mostly worked as a starter during his career, but he did pitch 9 2/3 innings of relief last postseason and allowed just a single run. If he can return in a week, the Red Sox will have a chance to evaluate him in his new role before deciding whether or not to make any additional moves.

It's also worth noting that Dombrowski has expressed a lot of confidence in Steven Wright, who left Saturday night's game after taking a line drive off the foot. So, depending on how severe Wright's injury -- a foot contusion -- is, that could prompt more action for the Red Sox, especially considering that Wright isn't eligible to pitch in the postseason anyway after serving an 80-game ban for using performance-enhancing substances.

Right now, it's unclear exactly what the Red Sox will do before the deadline. Either way, the move to get Cashner was a good one, but over the course of the next two weeks, Dombrowski and the Red Sox will have to take a long, hard look at their roster and decide whether or not they want to make any other moves.

Is a big second half for Sox in the cards? >>>

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Merloni: Why Alex Cora could return as Red Sox manager in 2021

Merloni: Why Alex Cora could return as Red Sox manager in 2021

Alex Cora and the Boston Red Sox mutually agreed to part ways last week as a result of the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal. But is there a chance he could return as Boston's manager in 2021?

That'll depend on the length of Cora's impending suspension. The ex-Red Sox skipper is expected to receive at least a one-year ban for his role in the Astros scandal, and it could exceed that if MLB finds wrongdoing by the 2018 Red Sox in their current investigation.

The Red Sox, though, believe they'll get off scot-free. If that's the case, Cora could be a managerial candidate again in 2021 and thus a reunion with Boston would be a possibility.

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Thursday on NBC Sports Boston's "Boston Sports Tonight," Lou Merloni explained why it would make sense to hire an interim manager like bench coach Ron Roenicke for the 2020 season and then explore options -- potentially Cora -- next offseason.

To me, I don't think Chaim Bloom his first hire for a manager he goes out and hires the best of what's left ... The next manager, I don't think you want to just take what's best. You want to wait and, you know, that's why you want to go interim for a year, and then you look at a bigger pool. One that may include Alex Cora ... 

Cora's a longshot. But we've got to see what happens with the investigation. We've got to hear from him after the investigation. We've got to see how the summer goes, the PR, how Roenicke does. I think you say, 'Ron, you're the manager of the team. We'll re-evaluate at the end of the year, there's no promises, I'm not going to give you a four-year deal, and you'll be up for the job next year too. We'll see what happens.'

Given Cora's current reputation around the league for his involvement in the Astros cheating scandal, it's difficult to imagine the Red Sox bringing him back. However, owner John Henry reportedly had every intention of keeping Cora, so maybe it wouldn't be so farfetched after all.

Tomase: Handicapping the Red Sox managerial candidates

Lou Merloni: Red Sox 'believe they will [get off scot-free]'

Lou Merloni: Red Sox 'believe they will [get off scot-free]'

The Boston Red Sox are facing a lot of unexpected uncertainty at this stage in the offseason. The team fired their manager Alex Cora amid a sign-stealing scandal from his time with the Houston Astros. And now, they're searching for a replacement.

At this point in the offseason, there aren't a lot of options available. And most of the best candidates may come internally.

That said, the Red Sox will want to make sure that none of those internal candidates, namely Ron Roenicke, were involved in any sort of sign stealing during Cora's Red Sox tenure.

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And just how would they do that? Lou Merloni offered up a potential solution on NBC Sports Boston's Early Edition on Thursday night.

"What you do is you don't even name the manager," Merloni said. "You go into spring training if you have to, whenever this investigation is over. Roenicke runs the team. [Jason] Varitek has more responsibility in camp.

"And when the report comes out -- and if it's what they believe it is, that they're clean -- then Roenicke's the manager, 'Tek's the bench coach and you go from there with no promises of the future and you just say this is the way we go. I think that's the easiest transition for everyone in that locker room."

This definitely would be a sensible route for the team to take. Essentially, they can have Roenicke continue to serve as the manager without officially naming him the manager until they know the results of the investigation.

And according to Merloni, the team does believe that Roenicke and other members of their staff are clean and as a result, the team won't be punished.

"I'm hearing that they believe they are [going to get off scot-free]," Merloni said. "They believe that what they're told is true and that they didn't do anything. And if they didn't do anything, there's no reason for punishment."

It's unclear exactly when the MLB's investigation will be complete, but this will certainly be something to watch moving forward. For the time being though, the Red Sox seem content to stick with what they have provided that everything comes back clean.