The Red Sox Free Agent Roundup – Pitcher Edition
The biggest area that the Red Sox need to fill this offseason is without question their starting pitching. Ben Cherington knows it, Red Sox Nation knows it and the players themselves know it. Cherington has even stated he will attempt to address this problem, but insists he won’t go after a high value, top end pitcher.
Lately, there have been some reports come out that the Red Sox are starting to poke around some high profile starting pitchers. While talks haven’t taken place and it is merely the feeling out process, could Cherington be persuaded to overspend on one of the top pitchers available on the market?
Here’s a quick roundup on some free agent pitchers that have been linked to the Red Sox lately.
Freddy Garcia – the former Yankee and now journeyman is a free agent and is considered the “low-value” type of pitcher that Cherington has said he’d like to pursue.
Last season with the Yankees, Garcia went 12-8 with a 3.26 ERA in 25 starts. He’s a thirteen year veteran in the bigs with his best years being in Seattle in the early 2000’s, being named to the All-Star game in 2001 and 2002. He is 35-years of age, but has proven he does have some major league caliber pitches left in his arsenal.
He would be a nice option for a fifth starter, providing he was relatively cheap and would take a two-year deal.
C.J. Wilson – it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Wilson’s name has surfaced, but don’t read too much into it. Wilson’s agent Bob Garber, who also represents Roy Oswalt has been contacted by the Red Sox. While it’s not known if Wilson is of interest to the Sox, his name might as well be included in the roundup simply by the fact that the Sox will speaking with his agent. Cherington will at minimum ask about Wilson but when he hears the terms that Wilson is looking for, that should end any further conversation. Wilson is reportedly looking for an 6-year deal worth around $120 million. It seems like a lot of dough for a pitcher who is coming off his best season, one that resulted in 16 wins. It’s not as though he’s won 20 games for a couple of years in a row. Wilson can thank a shallow free agent market this year, allowing him to cash in.
Roy Oswalt – as mentioned, Garber represents Oswalt and the Sox will likely inquire about the former Houston Astro ace. But Oswalt is a concern to me. While he’d bring a veteran presence to the clubhouse and would be a nice fourth or fifth starter, it’s his health that remains the big question. With an ailing back, Oswalt is considered high risk and with a few other free agent options available for less money, the Sox should inquire on Oswalt and leave it at that.
Mark Buehrle – the former White Sox ace is garnering a lot of attention, with as many as thirteen clubs showing interest in Buehrle. Amongst those teams is the Red Sox, but if the bidding gets to high, which it likely will, Cherington is likely to shy away and focus elsewhere.
That’s it for now, but as the hot stove continues to heat up, we’ll keep you posted as things progress.
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