First, it was reported the Boston Red Sox were pursuing Jordan Montgomery this offseason. Then, it seemed like they were out. He's been called "too expensive for their budget."
And ... nothing's changed. Now, some rumors are swirling suggesting the Sox are in on the lefty again. But others still aren't sure the Sox are committed to spending as much as Montgomery demands.
The Montgomery buzz picked up again after an overwhelmingly negative response to Boston's spring ticket drop. There's no telling if the two are related, but it's worth it to speculate.
Fans are upset about the Red Sox missing out on every major free agent they've targeted this offseason. This includes the likes of Shohei Ohtani, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Shōta Imanaga, Teoscar Hernández and Marcus Stroman.
Boston is too big a market and ownership has too much money to spend to be consistently out-bid by other clubs. Fans are tired of hearing the Red Sox are "interested" in targets — they want to hear that they're committed to bringing in better players. They've failed to prove that ever since they began deconstructing the 2018 World Series winning roster.
The best way for ownership to salvage this offseason would be to sign an ace. Boston lacks a reliable arm that can eat innings and keep runs off the board. Montgomery is one of the last men standing and he's the Sox's best option for success. Blake Snell is another, but his price is so high that fans are feel that's more wishful thinking. Montgomery remains the consistent and realistic target.
The Red Sox need to sign a top pitcher like Jordan Montgomery to keep fans involved
The Boston Globe's Alex Speier has suggested Boston is unlikely to sign a top-of-the-rotation pitcher, contrary to the many reports that the Sox are in on Montgomery. They're more likely to be searching for depth options.
The Red Sox's rotation is middle-of-the-road at its absolute best. Adding a depth arm won't be enough to convince fans the team is headed in the right direction.
There doesn't seem like a feasible way the Red Sox can change their fortunes for 2024, but signing an ace-caliber arm that can be a fixture on the roster for the next five or six years would be an encouraging start. Maybe the Red Sox realize that. Maybe they don't.
But the conflicting reports remain confusing as the fan base's stance remains the same.