July 16, 2020

Nathan Eovaldi Will Be The Likely Starter On Opening Day (Next Friday)

In his latest mailbag, Ian Browne (MLB.com) offers a guess at the 2020 Red Sox lineup:
The club will be facing lefty John Means on Opening Day, so I'm guessing the lineup is something like this:
Andrew Benintendi LF
Kevin Pillar RF
Xander Bogaerts SS
J.D. Martinez DH
Rafael Devers 3B
Christian Vázquez C
José Peraza 2B
Michael Chavis 1B
Jackie Bradley CF
Against righties, expect something along these lines:
Benintendi LF
Devers 3B
Bogaerts SS
Martinez DH
Mitch Moreland 1B
Vázquez C
Alex Verdugo RF
Bradley CF
Peraza 2B
There will certainly be days that Chavis plays first or second against a righty, with Peraza or Moreland getting a day off.
Nathan Eovaldi will be the likely starter next Friday when the Red Sox kick things off against the Orioles. Sean McAdam (Boston Sports Journal) notes Eovaldi is "the most built-up" of the starters. He pitched four innings (66 pitches) on Tuesday and is scheduled to pitch on Sunday, which is five days before the opener. Eovaldi says he has heard nothing, but thinks he'll be ready for 100 pitches on Opening Night.
Before we came back, I was throwing a lot — five or six innings, 100 pitches each time. I've just been having my usual soreness. Nothing new has popped up, so I feel like I'm ready.
Brian Joiner (Over The Monster) is putting Eovaldi's name down as a possible contender for the AL Cy Young Award (sort of).
[B]oth the Red Sox and world have gone to utter shit, but Eovaldi's arm is still attached and the team has to play for something. ... We have already seen how a merely decent righty can snatch the hardware over a full season (sorry, Rick Porcello). Why not a mercurial one in a sprint? ...

Eovaldi's exactly the type of pitcher you want in a grab-n-go season — one who throws 100 falling out of bed, unless he lands on his shoulder and, by extension, back on the IL.

My biggest fear in writing this column is that he's injured by the time I'm done typing it, but as he's avoided it up until now it's just a risk I'm going to take. ...

I think the short season helps Nate ... Of course he still needs to go out there and perform, but as of now, July 16, he's still ready. ... You could hardly reverse engineer a better situation for him to grab the trophy if you tried. Now he gets to try, and I hope to enjoy watching, if any of this happens at all.
Eduardo Rodriguez, Darwinson Hernandez, and Josh Taylor are sidelined after positive COVID-19 tests. Manager Ron Roenicke said Rodriguez has produced "a little better testing, so that's good".
We just need to continue to get a couple of good tests. All three of them, actually, the testing has been better on all three. We know they're getting over it and once we start getting those better tests, we're getting close.
With EdRo down and Chris Sale rehabbing from TJ surgery, the Red Sox are looking for additional arms. One possibility is Zack Godley. Even if Boston signs Godley, we should not expect too much. McAdam points out Godley has been with three organizations since last year's All-Star break and was DFA'd by two of them (Diamondbacks and Tigers):
[O]n an average pitching staff, Godley would merely represent a depth option ... With this team, Godley might rightfully claim to be their third-best starting option. And that bodes poorly for the 2020 Sox. ...

One talent evaluator offered this assessment on Godley: "Good dude who competes. But his stuff is regressing and he has poor mechanics and command. I see him as depth at Triple A and you hope he can rebuild so he could go to the bullpen as a multi-inning depth guy."


FenFan said...

One week to go!

I actually found myself watching the feed from yesterday afternoon's intersquad game at Fenway. I cannot say that I was enthralled by the action, and the pumped-in "crowd noise" became somewhat annoying after a time. But it was baseball...

james wilson said...

It would be good if no individual awards were given for a two month season. It's beyond asterik time.