With the offseason just about to wrap up, the Boston Red Sox finished reconfiguring their roster for the 2015 season on Thursday afternoon. The team capped off their productive winter by locking up starting pitcher Wade Miley on a 3 year, $19.5 million deal.
The 27-year old Miley was the only arbitration eligible player that the team had yet to sign to a new deal, and the two sides seemed destine to enter an salary arbitration hearing. Boston, however, decided to forgo Miley’s remaining arbitration period and inked the lefty to for the next three season, with a fourth year team option. Miley now joins right-handers Clay Buchholz and Joe Kelly as arms that Boston has control of beyond the 2015 season.
As a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks for the past four seasons, they 28-year old has thrown over 500 innings and holds a modest 3.79 ERA. While not known for his strikeout stuff, Miley collected over 180 punchouts last season, which was a significant raise after averaging around 145 in the previous 2 seasons. Like most of his rotation-mates, Miley has a tendancy of keeping the ball on the ground, as evident by his 48.6% career ground ball percentage. From 2013 to 2014 in particular, the Louisiana native has posted ratings over the 50% mark.
From a money standpoint, extending the southpaw means a couple things for the Red Sox.
The first, and probably less important thing is that Boston won’t need to go through the arbitration process with Miley next season. This isn’t only a plus for the Red Sox, but it also give the Red Sox newcomer a sense of contractual stability going forward. More importantly, however, locking up Miley allows the Red Sox to spread Miley’s earnings over the course of three seasons instead of negotiating a trio of inflated one-year pacts. This becomes an important factor in the teams effort to duck back below the $182 million luxury tax threshold.
- Left-handed reliever Drake Britton was claimed on waivers by the Chicago Cubs on Thursday, after being designated for assignment by Boston last week. Boston elected to use the 25-year old’s roster spot following the addition of reliever Alexi Ogando. The acquisition of Britton by the Cubs marks the fifth player in the last 6 months to be added by the Theo Epstein/Jed Hoyer lead regime. (Lefty Drake Britton claimed by the Cubs)
- The Red Sox appear to have taken a front seat in the Yoan Moncada sweepstakes, as suitors have begun to line up for the 19-year old’s services . Along with Boston, Moncada, who was just recently granted free agency after defecting from Cuba, has worked out for teams like the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers. The 19-year old infielder is constantly noted for drawing comparisons to a younger, switch-hitting Robinson Cano. (Red Sox angling to sign Cuban star Yona Moncada)
- Red Sox outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. plans on taking cues from Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch this season, as he tries to rebound from a dreadful rookie campaign. With a clean slate, the 24-year old will focus on himself and not letting the media act as a distraction. (Red Sox OF Jackie Bradley Jr says he’s going “all Marshawn Lynch” this season)
- After wrist injuries caused Dustin Pedroia to endure consecutive down seasons over the past two years, the Red Sox second baseman has enjoyed an offseason of health and rejuvenation. The 31-year old hasn’t only spent the winter getting healthy, but also adding muscle in order to bring his declining power numbers back up. In turn we should see a healthier, leaner Dustin Pedroia in 2015. (Red Sox’s Pedroia having strong off-season)
- Tweet of the day: A motivated David Ortiz is a very good thing.