Red Sox: Craig Breslow signs with Miami Marlins


Former Boston Red Sox reliever Craig Breslow has agreed to terms on a minor league deal with the Miami Marlins.

Craig Breslow‘s tenure in Boston has official come to an end.

The 35-year old right-handed reliever agreed to terms on a minor league deal with the Miami Marlins over the weekend, reports WEEI’s Rob Bradford. The deal includes an opt-out in late March that would allow him to go in search of other options if he feels he’s not in a position to make the team near the end of spring training, but he’ll earn $1.5 million if he does make the major league roster.

Breslow found early success with the Red Sox when he was first acquired from the Arizona Diamondbacks in the middle of the 2012 season. The following year he was a vital cog in a bullpen that aided the team in capturing a World Series title, as he posted a dazzling 1.81 ERA in 59.2 innings.

After that the wheels fell off, as Breslow battled injuries en route to delivering a career-worst 5.96 ERA. His poor performance forced the Red Sox to decline his $4 million option, but they ended up bringing him back for one more year at half the price. The veteran rebounded with a better season, but hardly a great one. His 4.15 ERA left a lot to be desired, but he did toss 65 innings, the most he has thrown since 2010. With a pitching rotation that failed to go deep into games, putting a strain on the team’s weary bullpen, Breslow’s availability became one of his best assets.

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Boston even used Breslow as a starter for two games down the stretch when their injury depleted rotation needed someone to fill in. Technically the Red Sox simply skipped using a starter and allowed the bullpen to take over the entire game, knowing Breslow wasn’t stretched out enough to handle a full starter’s workload. Yet he still managed to go at least 4 innings in both starts and ended up surrendering only 2 runs over 9.1 innings to close out the season.

Breslow’s short-term success in the rotation had him toying with the idea of looking for a job as a starter, but he’s now expected to be competing for a bullpen spot in Miami.

The Red Sox were among the teams interested in signing Breslow, but he wouldn’t have been a lock to make the Opening Day roster. With Breslow now off the market, the Red Sox continue to kick the tires on other veteran lefty relievers.

Boston could also look internally for a lefty reliever to fill Breslow’s role, with Tommy Layne and the freshly acquired Roenis Elias serving as potential options.

Next: Yoan Moncada or Rafael Devers?

Breslow’s time in Boston may have ended with a couple of down years, but he’ll forever be remembered for the contributions he made in the championship season of 2013.