Red Sox should call on Rick Porcello for pitching depth
It’s no secret that the Red Sox have hit a bit of a snag in the pitching department lately and they could use some help. Going into this season it was pretty clear that Chaim Bloom and Alex Cora had a plan for their pitching staff not only with the Major League club but also down in Worcester.
They had their five-man rotation set while also having top-tier options for depth in Triple-A, but the game plan needs an adjustment. While April and May were good to the Red Sox starters this month has been one hell of a long nightmare for the rotation. On top of that, we’ve also had the injury bug bite Boston’s prospect list in a massive way.
Top pitching prospects Thad Ward and Bryan Mata have both undergone Tommy John Surgery while Tanner Houck and Connor Seabold have each been on the IL with issues. Losing two of their best pitching prospects with two guys who were factored heavily into the 2021 plans has made things very difficult at Fenway Park.
Had at least Houck and Seabold, or even just one of them, remained healthy, we may have seen Boston place an arm or two on the IL for some phantom reason just to give them extra rest. The entire staff has already surpassed what they did in 2020 and is now in territory that they haven’t seen since 2019.
Cora mentioned a few times that he was a bit anxious in regards to durability once his staff would hit this mark and those concerns may have come to reality. So with their plans shaken up, it may be time for Bloom to hit the market and see what’s out there and a familiar face may offer the best solution.
That’s right Red Sox Nation, I’m calling for a return to Boston for Pretty Rick himself, Rick Porcello! I’ll give you some time to groan, throw things at your screen, or possibly even just walk away from the computer altogether. This suggestion will definitely earn some negative reviews but hear me out because it actually makes plenty of sense.
The biggest reason why Chaim should call Porcello is the sheer fact that he’s familiar with the organization. Why invest in another question mark of a player when you absolutely know what you’re going to get from the right-hander?
During his five years in Boston, he was a leader in the clubhouse and was never afraid to take ownership of his bad days while dishing out praise on his good ones. Rarely did he ever take credit on days where he was successful while he would always shoulder the blame when he couldn’t get the job done.
He’s the definition of a roller coaster pitcher but he’s a much better option than what we saw Chaim bring in last year and some of the options from 2021 already. I mean, would you rather have Ryan Weber or Rick Porcello? Come on, now.
Ricky Raindrops is an interesting guy in that while with the Red Sox he lead the Majors in wins one season and then losses the next. He won a Cy-Young and also gave up more homers than any other pitcher in the league. One season he’s great, the next he’s terrible, as I said, a roller coaster. But he’s reliable and he can offer the Sox what they hoped Weber was going to be able to do, give stability.
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He can be a long reliever and come in on those days where the starter can’t get it done or simply come out of the pen. I don’t know how he’d feel about not being a starter anymore but considering he was willing to take a massive pay cut to stay in Boston and isn’t pitching currently, he may take the offer. He can eat the innings, give the offense the chance to get things done and be back in a place where he loved pitching.
Bloom won’t give him any sort of big money to return to the club but he could give Porcello what he may want the most, a chance to prove he can still do it. His final season in Boston coupled with his lone year with the Mets put a damper on his career. This could be his opportunity to change that narrative.
He earned $3.7M of the $10M he signed for last year due to the prorated salaries and Chaim won’t be sniffing that dollar amount at all. I could see something as simple as a deal in the realm of $5M to entice him to come back but not insult him with a super lowball offer. The money is in the budget and it wouldn’t be any different than what he’s done with other players over his tenure so it’s not out of the realm of possibility.
I know many of you aren’t fans of Rick Porcello but considering the game plan the Red Sox had going into 2021 has been shattered, he could be an ingredient that makes this team’s recipe better. He has a relationship with a good chunk of the squad and more importantly, Cora. I’d say extend an offer and bring him in as a long reliever, jettison Matt Andriese into the shadow realm, and let Porcello finish his time in the Majors on a high note. Boston needs pitching help in a big way and the devil you know is a lot better than the one you don’t.