Red Sox: Signing Matt Andriese was a no-brainer thanks to his history

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - JULY 31: Matt Andriese #35 of the Los Angeles Angels pitches during the first inning of a game against the Houston Astros at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on July 31, 2020 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - JULY 31: Matt Andriese #35 of the Los Angeles Angels pitches during the first inning of a game against the Houston Astros at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on July 31, 2020 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /

Red Sox signee Matt Andriese has a long history with Boston

The Boston Red Sox have been pretty quiet so far this winter in what may be one of the slowest free agency windows in recent memory. Chaim Bloom has been calculated in the few moves that he has made, one of which was the signing of right-hander Matt Andriese. He checks the boxes that the team is looking for as far as a resume goes and the two have a history with one another.

He and Bloom were both in Tampa together and had a strong relationship during their respective tenures. The righty came to Boston on a one-year deal that also includes a club option for 2022. Considering the massive question mark that is the Red Sox’s pitching staff, a good campaign this year could see him back after 2021.

Andriese was a recent guest on’s “The Fenway Rundown,” where he spoke about not only his free agency but the relationship that he had built with Bloom in Tampa and how it paved the way for his decision to sign with Boston.

"“I do remember having a good communication process,” Andriese said earlier this week on MassLive’s The Fenway Rundown podcast. “Especially in my type of scenario, not knowing when I’m going to be pitching. I felt like I could always go to Chaim and ask him, ‘Hey, what are your thoughts here.’ Just makes the player much more comfortable and confident when you know what type of role you’re going to be in or how you’re valued. I have nothing but good things to say about Chaim.”"

As of now, it isn’t known where exactly Andriese will fall into the Boston pitching staff as the door is open in both the starting and relief departments. We still don’t know when exactly Chris Sale will be back from his offseason Tommy John surgery or what condition he’ll be in. With that slot wide open in the starting rotation it wouldn’t be a shock to see the right-hander as a starter to kick-off 2021.

Boston’s latest signee made it known that even though there was interest from other teams, it was the Red Sox that garnered his attention the most. He added that the history of Fenway Park was another factor in his decision, as it’s been one of his favorite places to pitch during his career.

"“There was a lot of interest out there and I was really happy with the Red Sox, their interest. When I heard they were interested… Fenway was always one of my favorite places to visit. The long history there and familiar faces within the team and front office. It seemed like a no-brainer for me.”"

He would go more in-depth with how he wanted to attack this offseason as far as his free agency was concerned. Andriese made it clear that he didn’t want to wait out the market to see if other dominoes on the board would begin to fall before accepting a deal.

It’s honestly a refreshing notion to hear from a player as it seems that the owners and players are once again at a standstill as salary is concerned. To go into the offseason with the mindset that he wants a deal and wants to get it done quickly is a break from the normal back and forth.

Bloom isn’t the only member of the Red Sox that the righty has a past with as the current top man in the rotation, Nathan Eovaldi, is another piece of this puzzle. During the process, he spoke with Evo to get a feel for Boston and the vibe of the team, and where he may fit into the machine. Having a connection not just in the front office but also in the very pitching staff that you’ll be joining is a major plus.

"“I wouldn’t say (he) recruited (me), but I did have some phone calls with him,” Andriese said. “Kind of giving me the ins and outs of some different scenarios.”"

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He can now make his way down to Fort Myers with some familiar faces already in his back pocket which should ease any awkwardness come spring. Andriese knows that he has a job it’s just a matter of where in the roster he’ll fall. The righty has plenty of experience both starting and relieving over his career and could be a bit of a double-agent for Alex Cora in 2021. If there’s ever the need, and there likely will be, the need for a spot start from anyone, Andriese is the guy that AC can plug into that gap.

Through six years in the Majors, Matt Andriese has a career 26-34 record through 460.2 IP. He carries a 4.57 ERA with a 4.23 FIP, 1.305 WHIP, 2.6 BB/9, and 9.3 K/9. The Red Sox were able to get him for a hell of a deal especially with the versatility that he offers the team.

His one-year/$2.1M guaranteed contract is the definition of a low cost/possible high reward deal. The contract won’t eat deeply into Boston’s recently reset budget and there is the potential that he can far exceed any expectations.

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With both the starting rotation and relief squad in need of some support, having Andriese on the roster is a big plus. Having guys that he already knows, and knows well, in the organization will offer him the chance to come to camp and not have to carry the stress of being the new kid in school. He should be able to show up at Fenway South and pitch without any extra weight on his shoulders.