The Boston Red Sox added an arm to their arsenal of pitchers Wednesday when they acquired hard-throwing right-hander Nathan Eovaldi from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for left-handed prospect Jalen Beeks.
Eovaldi, 28, underwent his second Tommy John surgery in August of 2016, but put up serviceable numbers in 10 starts for the Rays this season, going 3-4 with a 4.26 ERA.
The right-hander has averaged 96.9 mph on his fastball this season, according to Statcast, and he’ll unleash that powerful heater for the first time in a Red Sox uniform come Sunday, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski announced prior to Boston’s Wednesday night game with the Baltimore Orioles.
David Price will get the ball Wednesday at Camden Yards and Brian Johnson will make the start Thursday in the series opener against the Minnesota Twins, after which Johnson will head back to the bullpen and the Sox will insert Eovaldi into the rotation, per Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald.
Chris Sale will pitch Game 2 of the series with the Twins, followed by Rick Porcello and Eovaldi on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. Drew Pomeranz, who made his first start in two months Tuesday, won’t start again until Monday against the Philadelphia Phillies.
The Red Sox have a critical four-game series next week against the rival New York Yankees, and Dombrowski broke down how Boston’s rotation will set up for the battle with the Sox’s rivals.
Eovaldi also has the ability to transition to the bullpen if need be, but for now he will join a Red Sox rotation that has been snake bitten by injuries over the past two months.
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