The Boston Red Sox starting rotation is going to look a lot different during the shortened 2020 season.
With Chris Sale out due to Tommy John surgery and David Price now on the Los Angeles Dodgers, left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez will be counted on to anchor the pitching staff. Then, it'll be Nathan Eovaldi and newcomer Martin Perez in the No. 2 and 3 spots.
After that are are a couple of question marks. Right-hander Collin McHugh, who signed a one-year deal with Boston in March, likely will miss some time to begin the season as he continues to rehab his injured elbow. That leaves the fourth and fifth spots in the rotation wide open.
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After the team's intrasquad scrimmage Sunday, manager Ron Roenicke told reporters that southpaw Brian Johnson is a candidate for the No. 4 spot and he may roll with an "opener" in the No. 5 slot.
Red Sox will move into evening workouts on Friday as preparation for the season.— Pete Abraham (@PeteAbe) July 12, 2020
Ron Roenicke said he sees Brian Johnson as a good candidate for the rotation.
"We all do," he said.
Roenicke says Sox are leaning toward an opener for the 5th spot in the rotation— Pete Abraham (@PeteAbe) July 12, 2020
Based on that information, starting rotation to begin the season would look like this:
1. Eduardo Rodriguez
2. Nathan Eovaldi
3. Martin Perez
4. Brian Johnson
Right-hander Ryan Weber is expected to be in the mix as well, but how he'll fit into the rotation remains to be seen.
It definitely doesn't look like pitching will be a strength for Boston in its 60-game campaign. Making matters even more difficult is Rodriguez's positive COVID-19 test, which could further complicate things to start the season.
Opening Day for the Red Sox is scheduled for July 24 vs. the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park.