Red Sox

Report: Red Sox interested in these two veteran starters

Red Sox

As expected, the Boston Red Sox appear to be actively scouring the free-agent market for starting pitching.

Earlier this month it was reported the Red Sox were showing interest in two-time Cy Young award winner Corey Kluber. They're also expected to be an "aggressive suitor" for Japanese ace Tomoyuki Sugano.

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On Friday, Alex Speier of The Boston Globe reported two additional names the Red Sox have shown interest in: right-hander Jake Odorizzi and lefty Rich Hill.

Odorizzi made only four starts in 2020 due to injuries but was rock-solid for the Minnesota Twins in 2019. That season, the 30-year-old went 15-7 with a 3.51 ERA in 30 starts. He also spent five seasons in Tampa Bay while Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom was in the Rays front office.

Hill, a Boston native, is coming off a 2020 campaign in which he posted a 3.03 ERA and 1.16 WHIP in eight appearances with the Twins. The 40-year-old had two prior stints with the Red Sox (2010-12, 2015).

The Red Sox desperately need to improve their pitching staff following a season in which they ranked 28th in ERA (5.58) and dead-last in WHIP (1.60). The returns of southpaw Eduardo Rodriguez and Chris Sale should provide a considerable boost, but bringing in a reliable arm or two via free agency or trade should be priority No. 1 for Boston this offseason.