Two-time Cy Young award winner Corey Kluber will be demoted to the Boston Red Sox bullpen after a rough start to his 2023 campaign.
On Wednesday, manager Alex Cora told WEEI's "Gresh and Fauria" that right-hander Tanner Houck will take Kluber's spot in the rotation.
"We were waiting for Tanner to see how he felt after his start," Cora said. "We're going to make a change, actually. Tanner's going to start on Sunday and Corey is going to the bullpen starting on Friday.
"We had that conversation with Corey, and very professional. He understands, you know? Like, he signed here to be a starter but right now he's struggling and obviously the kids are throwing the ball well. There's a lot of off days coming up. So we decided to make the change."
Through nine starts this season, Kluber is 2-6 with a 6.26 ERA. The most alarming part of the 37-year-old's struggles has been his uncharacteristic command issues. He has walked 18 batters in 41 2/3 innings after walking only 21 in 164 innings last year.
As for Houck, the 26-year-old is 3-3 with a 4.99 ERA through nine starts. In his most recent outing vs. the Los Angeles Angels, he allowed only one run on three hits while striking out eight batters and walking two in six innings.
Last week, veteran righty Nick Pivetta was demoted to the bullpen. With Kluber joining him, the Red Sox starting rotation should look like this for the foreseeable future:
- Chris Sale
- Garrett Whitlock
- Tanner Houck
- Brayan Bello
- James Paxton
Paxton will take the mound for Wednesday's series finale in Anaheim. The Red Sox will then wrap up their road trip with a three-game series vs. the Arizona Diamondbacks.