Red Sox News: Eduardo Rodriguez to get his Opening Day redemption
Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodriguez will start on Opening Day
The story is far from over but it’s hard to not be pretty happy with how it’s progressing up to this point. It wasn’t long ago that Boston Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodriguez not only saw his chances of pitching on Opening Day slip through his fingers but that his entire season would be lost. A rough battle with COVID and the myocarditis that stemmed from it robbed him of his 2020 campaign, but now he’s back, and he’s taking what was rightfully his.
If someone had tuned into spring training this year and had no idea that E-Rod hadn’t pitched a meaningful outing in nearly a year they’d probably be stunned. Boston’s big lefty hasn’t missed a beat despite his recent health woes and has poised himself to once again be the ace of this current staff. With Chris Sale on the shelf due to Tommy John and David Price shipped out west, Eddie Aces has risen to the occasion to lead this starting rotation.
Alwx Cora made it official yesterday and penned Rodriguez as his Opening Day starter, again, something most of us probably expected. This rotation is in desperate need of a rock and a leader and with E-Rod back in the mix, they get both. There are plenty of new faces mixed in with those that are returning, but none is more important than Eddie’s. We don’t know when exactly Sale will return this year and what form he will be in so having Eduardo as the first line of defense for the starting rotation is paramount.
"“He’s one of the best out there,” Cora said after the game. “He had a great season in ’19. Last year, he wasn’t able to pitch for obvious reasons, and what he’s shown now is that he’s healthy, he’s ready to go. Fifty-one pitches in five innings against a good lineup — it was just a matter of time and that’s our Opening Day starter.”"
I think we all knew that if he looked good this spring that Cora would tap him to open the season for the Red Sox but I don’t know if anyone expected him to look this good. Through three starts he’s 2-0 with a 2.31 ERA, 0.686 WHIP, and 10.8 K/9 all through 11.2 innings pitched. He’s been lights out and damn near untouchable only giving up eight hits in that span, two of which left the yard. It’s clear that once he got the clean bill of health he got right to work so he’d be ready to pick up where he left off in 2019.
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There are a lot of players on this roster that are attacking 2021 with a massive chip on their shoulders. They want to prove that what happened last season was a fluke and not the true quality of this squad. Redemption is the name of the game for the Red Sox this season and none seem more driven to achieve that than Eddie. He lost out on an entire year of his career due to COVID and its effects, a year that was coming off of the best campaign of his life. 2020 was supposed to be the season that saw him transcend what we had seen in past years and reach that next level, better late than never.
"“If I got the opportunity, I’m going to be so happy to do it because that’s something everybody wants to do one time in their career,” Rodriguez said. “If I have an opportunity to do it this year, I’m going to really appreciate it. I’m going to love it. Be the first pitcher of the season for us, I’m going to be so happy with it, you know.”"
Eduardo Rodriguez has shown great promise in his time with the Red Sox with 2019 being the dictionary definition of a breakout year. Fans the world over were excited and anxious to see how he would follow up those efforts last season but it wasn’t meant to be. With COVID and myocarditis now in his rearview mirror, the big thing on the horizon is Opening Day. Something that is almost a year in the making is finally about to happen as we get to see E-Rod take the mound to set the pace for the season.