Red Sox sound like they think Lucas Giolito might be perfect trade deadline asset

2024 Boston Red Sox Spring Training
2024 Boston Red Sox Spring Training / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

Lucas Gioltio signed with the Boston Red Sox to rehab his career and hit free agency again as soon as possible. His plan may be working.

It may be working so well that Boston's new pitching coach Andrew Bailey said, "he's not far removed from being a Cy Young contender." Building Cy Young contenders is Bailey's specialty, after all.

Giolito signed with the Red Sox because they pursued him aggressively during his short stint as a free agent and because he wanted to work with Bailey. It sounds like the two could make Giolito's hopes a reality.

Bailey likes to tailor his coaching to each pitcher he works with. He's helped Giolito find areas he needs to target for improvement and the pitcher is already impressed with his results. Bailey's program is intense and Giolito and the rest of the hurlers have been throwing live batting practice since the second day of camp.

“I didn’t think I’d be throwing this hard this early,” Giolito said, impressed with his progress.

Lucas Giolito's progress at Red Sox spring training may be setting him up to be a good trade deadline asset

Giolito has been working on hiding the baseball and timing his release to keep batters in the dark and has been getting good reviews from his teammates on his changes.

If his pitching journey continues to go smoothly, Giolito should be well-prepared for the coming season, and maybe even get back to his old self — and that's exactly what the veteran was hoping for.

Not many reporters or fans expect the Red Sox to be in a position to compete for a playoff spot this season. With any luck, Giolito will be able to play a part in some success for Boston. But if the Sox don't end up contending and Giolito can find his 2019-2021 form, he could be a fine trade deadline asset for the Sox.

If the righty does jive on the mound again, he's likely to opt out of the next year of his contract and try to find a team that's likely to contend for a spot in the postseason in 2025. If Boston can dish him at the deadline, it'll be able to get something in exchange for the veteran rather than letting him opt out just a few months later for no return.

Turning Giolito back into a Cy Young contender and securing a playoff spot would be the best possible outcome for the Sox. If Giolito improves and Boston makes the postseason he may want to stick around another year to work with Bailey more and to stretch his playoff experience. It's a win-win for everybody.

As Giolito finds himself, much of the Red Sox pitching staff is doing the same. Many have referred to Giolito as Boston's biggest signing of the offseason, but Bailey might be the true savior of the rotation.

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