Torey Lovullo is finally getting his chance.

According to a major league source, Arizona Diamondbacks have named Lovullo to become their next manager. Lovullo had been the bench coach for the Red Sox since John Farrell was hired prior to the 2013 season.

Torey Lovullo is finally getting his chance.

According to a major league source, Arizona Diamondbacks have named Lovullo to become their next manager. Lovullo had been the bench coach for the Red Sox since John Farrell was hired prior to the 2013 season.

It is the first full-time major league managing job for the 51-year-old, who filled in for Farrell on an interim basis in the final 49 games of the 2015 regular season, going 28-21.

Lovullo has managed in the minor leagues with both the Indians and Red Sox organizations.

He had previously interviewed for major league managing jobs with the Dodgers, Indians, Red Sox, Astros, Rangers and Twins.

Arizona sports radio station 98.7 FM was first to report the news.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

It makes some sense.

Greg Holland

Greg Holland

It makes some sense.

With bullpens evolving like they are – as was evidenced by the Indians’ regular season and postseason use of Andrew Miller – the notion of the Red Sox at least kicking the tires on Greg Holland is understandable. And that’s exactly what Dave Dombrowski and Co. will be doing.

Red Sox representatives are planning on attending Monday’s showcase for the former Royals closer.

Holland represents one of the more intriguing relieving options in the free agent market, having not pithed in 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery at the end of the 2015 season.

The 30-year-old had been one of the game’s premier closers prior to tearing his ulnar collateral ligament. From 2013-14 he was the closer for a Kansas City bullpen that was considered the best in baseball. During that stretch Holland posted a 1.32 ERA over 133 appearances, going 93 for 98 in save chances.

Holland ultimately pitched the entire 2015 season with a torn UCL, with his fastball velocity dropping significantly, with his average fastball going from 96 to 93 mph. That season he managed a 3.83 ERA in 48 games, going 32-for-37 in save opportunities.

The right-hander’s agent, Scott Boras, recently told the New York Post that Holland is back to throwing in the low 90’s and is “back at full steam” heading into the offseason.

While the Red Sox don’t figure to get in the mix for any of top closers on the market, with Kenley Jansen, Mark Melancon and Aroldis Chapman all becoming free agents, a pitcher like Holland could be intriguing. Along with closer Craig Kimbrel, the Red Sox figure to boast Carson Smith and Joe Kelly as potential high-leverage relievers. But if the Sox don’t re-sign Koji Uehara there may be a very real opening for a pitcher like Holland.

The Giants and Royals are two teams reportedly have significant interest in Holland.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

Greg Holland

Greg Holland

It makes some sense.

With bullpens evolving like they are – as was evidenced by the Indians’ regular season and postseason use of Andrew Miller – the notion of the Red Sox at least kicking the tires on Greg Holland is understandable. And that’s exactly what Dave Dombrowski and Co. will be doing.

Red Sox representatives are planning on attending Monday’s showcase for the former Royals closer.

Holland represents one of the more intriguing relieving options in the free agent market, having not pithed in 2016 after undergoing Tommy John surgery at the end of the 2015 season.

The 30-year-old had been one of the game’s premier closers prior to tearing his ulnar collateral ligament. From 2013-14 he was the closer for a Kansas City bullpen that was considered the best in baseball. During that stretch Holland posted a 1.32 ERA over 133 appearances, going 93 for 98 in save chances.

Holland ultimately pitched the entire 2015 season with a torn UCL, with his fastball velocity dropping significantly, with his average fastball going from 96 to 93 mph. That season he managed a 3.83 ERA in 48 games, going 32-for-37 in save opportunities.

The right-hander’s agent, Scott Boras, recently told the New York Post that Holland is back to throwing in the low 90’s and is “back at full steam” heading into the offseason.

While the Red Sox don’t figure to get in the mix for any of top closers on the market, with Kenley Jansen, Mark Melancon and Aroldis Chapman all becoming free agents, a pitcher like Holland could be intriguing. Along with closer Craig Kimbrel, the Red Sox figure to boast Carson Smith and Joe Kelly as potential high-leverage relievers. But if the Sox don’t re-sign Koji Uehara there may be a very real opening for a pitcher like Holland.

The Giants and Royals are two teams reportedly have significant interest in Holland.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford
Clay Buchholz (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Clay Buchholz (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Make no mistake about it, $13.5 million is a lot of money.

But when it comes to weighing the pros and cons of allocating that figure to Clay Buchholz for the 2017 season, it’s not difficult to see why the Red Sox have committed to paying the 32-year-old in 2017.

Usually, when talking about Buchholz the conversation begins and ends with potential. Whether it’s the optimism that he represents, or the frustration which has often times followed. But this time that’s just part of the equation.

What most likely really put the Red Sox over the edge when it came to picking up Buchholz’s option was the market.

This is by far the worse starting pitching free agent market in years. It’s pretty much Rich Hill and then everybody else. Sure, the likes of Bartolo Colon, Doug Fister and Jeremy Hellickson can all serve a purpose. But are any of those starters in the class of what Buchholz showed for the final two months of the season?

Unlike last year, when the Red Sox chose to hold on to Buchholz instead of Wade Miley in the Carson Smith trade, there should be some willingness from Dave Dombrowski to either move on from Buchholz in a trade, or use him as rotation protection while dealing away someone like Eduardo Rodriguez.

David Price, Rick Porcello, and Steven Wright aren’t going anywhere. But if you want to get serious about a deal involving someone like Chris Sale, then Rodriguez or Drew Pomeranz might become interesting chips that you couldn’t afford to include last offseason. Buchholz, even as your fifth starter, is a very palatable starting rotation safety valve.

And what if the Red Sox want to explore taking advantage of starting pitching landscape by dealing Buchholz?

Buchholz went 4-0 with a 2.98 ERA in his last eight regular starts, while managing a 1.93 ERA in eight relief outings. Even with the 5.91 ERA in the first half, he’s the type of pitcher who should have substantial value, potentially getting an even greater haul (because of the market) than last offseason.

If the Red Sox didn’t pick up the $13.5 million option, then you just put an enormous dent in your offseason flexibility. It just wouldn’t have made sense.

As we sit here, it would seem like this financial commitment is money well spent.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

The Red Sox are committing to Clay Buchholz for 2017.

Clay Buchholz

Clay Buchholz

The Red Sox are committing to Clay Buchholz for 2017.

The team announced Thursday afternoon that it is picking up the pitcher’s $13.5 million option for next season. It is the second straight year the Red Sox have exercised Buchholz’s team option, opting to pay the righty $13 million in 2016.

Buchholz’s case was an interesting one considering what he showed in the final few months of the regular season. Having gotten another chance at entering the starting rotation due to Steven Wright’s injury, the righty went 4-0 with a 2.98 ERA in eight starts.

He also excelled out of the bullpen, managing a 1.93 ERA in eight relief outings.

The issue that made the option somewhat of a question is how Buchholz performed in the first half of the season, putting up a 5.91 ERA in the first half prior to making adjustments to his arm angle midway through July.

A recent poll conducted by WEEI.com saw a majority of fans (50 percent) thought picking up Buchholz’s option and putting him in the rotation was the right move, with 31 percent believing the Sox should exercise the option and trade the pitcher. Nineteen percent thought the option should be picked up.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

Now that the World Series is a thing of the past, the roster-shuffling has started.

Ryan Hanigan

Ryan Hanigan

Now that the World Series is a thing of the past, the roster-shuffling has started.

According to a major league source, the Red Sox have informed Ryan Hanigan they won’t be picking up his $3.75 million option for the 2017 season. The catcher made $3.7 million in 2016, the final season of a three-year deal.

The 36-year-old Hanigan battled injuries during his two seasons in Boston, playing in 54 games in 2015 and just 35 last season. In 314 plate appearances with the Sox, he hit .219 with three homers and a .592 OPS.

Hanigan came to the Red Sox prior from San Diego in a trade that sent third baseman Will Middlebrooks to the Padres.

There didn’t appear to be a fit for Hanigan with the Red Sox in 2017, with both Sandy Leon and Christian Vazquez out of options, and Blake Swihart coming back from his ankle injury.

FanRag’s Jon Heyman was first to report the Red Sox’ decision.

For more on the Red Sox’ offseason, go to the team page by click here.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford