I remember when the Red Sox traded for Eovaldi. My biggest takeaway was that I was cool with getting rid of Jalen Beeks, after his first start at Fenway I had seen enough. Dude is Henry Owens 2.0, I'm more than all-set with that. Then when Eovaldi pitched 7 shutout in his first start as a Red Sox I was all-in on this dude I had forgotten about from the Yankees a few years back.
A few weeks ago I laid out my-ideal-red-sox-off-season.html. Two of those things have already happened; first the club brought back World Series MVP to a one year deal, and postseason hero Nathan Eovaldi is coming back for 4 years. To paraphrase myself they didn't let emotions from a World Series run cause them to overpay.
I love this deal more than gay Greg on Curb loves his sewing machine.
And I must say, this is a fabulous deal for the Boston Red Sox.
I was worried that some team would overreact to Eovaldi's postseason performances and throw him something with an AAV (average annual value) north of 20 million which personally would be where I draw the line. I love Nate and what he could potentially do, but I've said it a million times the Red Sox (despite their league high payroll) need to find ways to save money for when Mookie's deal is up. With Nate's new deal's AAV a shade under 17 million per season, this deal turns into somewhat a bargain for a guy who could end up becoming more than a middle of the rotation guy. I expect him to become the team's 3rd starter once Porcello (likely) leaves in free agency. Considering the contract that Sox gave Porcello when they traded for him was I believe 4 years-88 million they have found a replacement with better stuff for less money. Personally for Nate it's not too bad of a deal either considering where this guy was going into 2018. Didn't pitch in 2017, making 2 million bucks for the lowly Rays after getting released by the Yankees. Great call by them to let this guy go btw.
I know Evo has had multiple Tommy Johns, but this is a deal that makes sense for both parties, and I'm wicked pumped to have this guy back in a Red Sox uniform. I love stats, but they don't tell the entire story, the rest of the team loves this guy, making it a great clubhouse move in addition to a smart baseball decision. David Price can twitch stream his excitement at some point today.
In October Evo was a stud, of course highlighted by his 6 inning relief effort in game 3 of the World Series, Eovaldi pitched 22.1 innings in October allowing only 4 runs. It wasn't Sale or Price, but Eovaldi who was the Red Sox best pitcher in October. He went 2-1 with a 1.61 ERA over 6 appearances (2 starts) striking out 16 batters while only walking 4 en route to a World Series title. The "Rover" was Alex Cora's not so secret weapon in the playoffs helping bridge the gap to Kimbrel when many Red Sox fans (including myself) worried going into October who would fill that role?
While part of me is worried that the Red Sox might have over-used him in October since there was the potential they'd let him walk. Part of me feels like they handled him in October like he wasn't part of the long term plans. I get it Alex Cora has forgotten more about baseball than I know, but pitching someone multiple times in between starts is something we haven't seen since black weren't allowed to play. I'm definitely concerned with how it could impact him going forward; but in the same breathe he could be totally fine. It was only 22 innings.
However, it appears to me Eovaldi and his cheese biting at 101 seem to have figured things out post- TJ surgery.
Here's to more of these type of moments in 2019 and beyond. Eov is back, the Red Sox are still the best team in baseball, excited to see what else they do this off-season.