Nathan Eovaldi, 4-years, $60 million
The initial offer I made of 3-years, $42 million was challenged by the Chicago White Sox with a 3-year, $50 million offer. The rules of our simulation didn’t allow for us to match offers for our own free agents, forcing me to top any other suitors by at least five percent.
I was hesitant to go any higher for a pitcher who will slot in ear the back of the rotation so I countered by adding an addition year. It’s a lower average annual value than the Pale Hose were offering but with more total guaranteed. The Commissioner and Player Agent for our simulation agreed that my offer was the best one.
There is some concern about giving four years to a pitcher who has had Tommy John surgery twice, with the most recent procedure costing Eovaldi the entire 2017 season. However, he showed no ill effects from the surgery this season, displaying his trademark velocity that can hit triple digits on the radar gun. He’s only 28 years old so there isn’t much risk of decline over the duration of this deal as long as he can remain relatively healthy.
Eovaldi pitched well following a mid-season trade with the Tampa Bay Rays. He was 3-3- with a 3.33 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, and 8.0 K/9 in 12 games (11 starts) with the Red Sox. The right-hander followed that with an excellent postseason, winning both his starts and making four relief appearances. That includes a heroic six-inning effort to salvage the bullpen in the 18-inning marathon against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 3 of the World Series.