The clock is ticking as the Boston Red Sox begin their offseason
The Atlanta Braves are World Series champions following a decisive victory over the Houston Astros in Game 6. With the Fall Classic now complete, the offseason officially begins. The decisions made over the next five days will be pivotal in determining the path the Boston Red Sox take to upgrading their roster.
The day after the World Series ends is when players can file for free agency and the Red Sox have several who are eligible to hit the market.
Most notable among that group is Eduardo Rodriguez. The lefty is an interesting case following a season in which he battled inconsistency as he worked his way back from a lost 2020 campaign. His underwhelming 13-8 record and 4.74 ERA are not the traditional numbers that players looking for a big payday want to carry with them into free agency. A deeper analysis shows a career-best 10.6 K/9, 2.7 BB/9 and 3.32 FIP. Rodriguez finished the season strong, signaling he’s poised for a bounce-back year. Teams are always on the hunt for starting pitching so there will be a market for a southpaw with his upside.
The Red Sox have five days to decide if they are going to extend a qualifying offer to Rodriguez. If they do, E-Rod will have ten days to accept the offer, in which case he’ll remain under team control for one more year with a salary of $18.4 million. Boston can still negotiate a deal to re-sign him if he declines but would recoup a compensation draft pick if he signs with another club. The protection against losing Rodriguez for nothing makes the gamble of extending a qualifying offer worthwhile even if the short-term cost is a bit steep based on recent results.