Five free agent relievers Red Sox could pursue from World Series teams
By Sean Penney
Will Harris is coming off an excellent season in which he posted a 1.50 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, and 9.3 K/9 in 60 innings out of the Astros bullpen.
Those sparkling numbers will make Harris a popular target in free agency but the 35-year old’s age and lack of the “proven closer” tag should keep the price tag in Boston’s range. Harris did save 12 games during his All-Star campaign in 2016 but he doesn’t have enough of a track record in the role to command a closer’s salary.
He’s not an elite strikeout pitcher but Harris has struck out over a batter per inning throughout his career and he posted elite figures in several other categories. His 2.1 BB/9 and 0.9 HR/9 both ranked in the top-20 among American Leauge relievers.
The right-hander has been effective against batters from either side of the plate, holding right-handed hitters to a .183/.269/.333 slash line and lefties to .207/.226/.264. That versatility has value to a Red Sox team that prefers not to use a roster spot on a specialist.
Harris has been one of Houston’s most reliable relievers this postseason, tossing 5 2/3 innings through the first two rounds against the Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees.