Learning about new Red Sox pitcher Dylan Covey.
The Boston Red Sox front office has been busy at work, trying to find cheap options to eat up innings for the 2020 season. Within the last few weeks, the Red Sox have traded and signed several more pitchers to compete for a spot on the major league team.
Covey made his debut in Boston on Saturday, coming out of the bullpen for 2 innings, giving up 3 hits and 2 earned runs, while striking out 2. Manager Ron Roenicke said he liked what he saw and sent him down to Pawtucket to get “stretched out”.
If he’s pitching two innings out of the pen without being fully ready to start, he has a chance to play a key role on the 2020 Red Sox when he is ready. With no real 4th and 5th starter, Covey has a great chance to stick around on the major league roster.
Since Covey has been apart of the Red Sox organization for about a week, it’s important to learn about his very interesting journey to the majors. He is a California native who attended Maranatha High School in Pasadena. Throughout his high school career, he thrived as a pitcher, but struggled to bat. After a strong senior season, it was expected that Covey would be selected in the first round of the MLB Draft. He was having a problem with his weight, however, losing 35 pounds and being unable to gain it back during his senior year.
In the 2010 MLB Draft, he was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers with the 14th overall selection. Covey was picked directly after the White Sox took Chris Sale. Everything was normal and Covey was looking to sign a $2 million signing bonus. In his post-draft physical, however, everything changed for him and his family.
It was discovered that he had Type 1 diabetes. It was totally unexpected news for him and the Brewers. Milwaukee ended up offering Covey a $1.6 million signing bonus. Covey ended up turning it down in order to stay close to family and doctors to get used to having this condition.
He ended up attending the University of San Diego. He played two years of college baseball but finished with a 7.60 ERA in his freshman season and a 3.32 ERA (6-3 record) in his sophomore season. After his sophomore season, he was selected by the Oakland Athletics in the fourth round of the 2013 MLB Draft, where he signed a $370,000 signing bonus. He was selected seven picks after the Dodgers took Cody Bellinger.
It was a given that Covey’s route to the big leagues would be tougher than the usual athlete after being diagnosed with diabetes, but he was determined to make his dreams come true.
After making it all the way up to AA with the Oakland Athletics, the Chicago White Sox selected Covey in the 2016 Rule 5 Draft.
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Covey was quickly added to the major league roster for Opening Day in 2017. He ended up making his major league debut on April 14, giving up 5 hits and 1 earned run in 5.1 innings. He spent the majority of the year between AAA and the big leagues. In the majors, he went 0-7 with a 7.71 ERA in 18 games (12 starts).
Before the 2018 season, he was outrighted and moved off of the 40-man roster. Covey played pretty well in AAA which is why he spent part of the season in the big leagues once again. He ended up going 5-14 with a 5.18 ERA in 27 games (21 starts).
In 2019, Covey once again pitched well in AAA but not great in the big leagues. He went 2-1 with a 2.82 ERA in Triple A while going 1-8 with a 7.98 ERA with Chicago. He was later designated for assignment and refused to report to AAA, making him a free agent. The Rays ended up signing him on January 30, 2020.
In 2020 Spring Training, Covey went 0-1 with a 3.52 ERA after giving up 3 earned runs in 7.2 innings. Since he did not make the major league roster, the Red Sox were able to trade for him without giving anything up. They added him to the major league roster and it appears he will spend the majority of the season in the big leagues with Boston.
With the Red Sox enjoying what they have seen from Covey so far, hopefully he can play a key role for them this season. He could start games for Boston, appear as an opener, or just come out of the bullpen. Either way, Covey can eat up innings and can help the Red Sox immensely this season.