Carlos Rodón is set up to be one of the most coveted free agent pitchers this off-season. Just 28 years old, Rodón is coming off his most successful season in which he became an All-Star thanks to a 2.37 ERA and a WHIP under 1. Despite his, the White Sox somehow didn’t give him a Qualifying Offer, meaning they won’t gain a draft pick if he signs elsewhere. Magically, it could be that decision to bring him to the Red Sox. Let me explain.
Why Rodón Makes Sense
The Red Sox just lost their own 28 year old in Eduardo Rodríguez, who just signed a 5 year deal with the Detroit Tigers. Unlike the White Sox, the Red Sox offered Rodriguez a qualifying offer, meaning they gained a draft pick for losing him. However, they lose that pick if they sign another player who had been offered a QO. That wouldn’t be the case for Rodón. (It also wouldn’t be a case for another pitcher fellow writer Al Nahigian wrote about.)
Not only this, but Rodón provides the team with a better pitcher than they lost. The two have similar career numbers, as they both have a 110 ERA+ so far, but Rodón’s 2021 season was better than Rodriguez’s, even considering ERod’s bad luck.
Why Rodón Doesn’t Make Sense
Thanks to Rodón’s 2021 season, you have to think he’ll be looking for a pricey deal. This Red Sox front office has spent some on players, but they also have seemed committed to not triggering the luxury tax. That might not be the case anymore, but the fear is still there, and if the team is still going in that direction, Rodón might be out of their price range. Having Scott Boras as his agent increases that likelihood.
There’s also the matter of Rodón’s playoff appearance. In the ADLS this year, Rodón made it only 56 pitches into his lone start before needing to leave the game, prompting questions about his health. He didn’t pitch again in the series, so he has had no opportunity to affirm or deny this with his play. Boras says the performance was simply due to fatigue and the innings hike from 2020, which makes sense, but still provides some uncertainty for teams. The Red Sox rotation already doesn’t have the best injury history, so they might not want to take on another player who is at risk to miss time.
All this said, I think Carlos would be a great addition to this Red Sox rotation. Even if he can’t 100% repeat his 2021 season, he would be a great 3rd starter. Imagine how good this team would be in that case. As long as he doesn’t break the bank for this team, he should be considered one of the top choices to try and woo this off-season. Time will tell to see if they’re successful.
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