It sure sounds like Nathan Eovaldi never seriously considered leaving the Boston Red Sox.
The hard-throwing right-hander, who recently re-signed with Boston, was reintroduced Monday during a press conference at the Major League Baseball Winter Meetings in Las Vegas. Eovaldi admitted other teams were vying for his services, but he also made it seem like Red Sox were his preference all along.
Money obviously played a big role — Boston inked the 28-year-old to a four-year, $67.5 million deal — but so did everything Eovaldi experienced in his three months with the Red Sox.
“There were other teams out there that were interested …. I don’t want to name anybody in particular, but there were other offers,” Eovaldi said alongside Dave Dombrowski and Alex Cora. “The Red Sox, they came in with the best one. The relationship that I had over there, all that experience that I gained – I feel like, as a player, you always want to have that love and support from your teammates. And not only them, but from the fans. I felt like I was able to achieve that.
“Last year, with the postseason run, I want to come back and experience that again. Hopefully be a part of history again and come back and win another World Series.”
Eovaldi also revealed he drew interest as a potential closer, middle-innings reliever and even as a part-time starter. The Red Sox, however, likely will use him as a fixture in their starting rotation.
The Texas native pitched well after being acquired via midseason trade with the Tampa Bay Rays, going 3-3 with a 3.33 ERA in 12 appearances (11 starts). It was his performance in the postseason, though, that really elevated his stock.
Serving in the “rover” role for the Red Sox, Eovaldi went 2-1 with a 1.61 ERA in six appearances (two starts) during Boston’s run to a World Series championship.