Bobby Valentine’s combative comments Wednesday afternoon on Boston sports radio station WEEI did not go unnoticed in the Red Sox front office.
According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, Red Sox GM Ben Cherington had a “brief discussion” with Valentine before Wednesday night’s game against the Mariners. Cherington didn’t describe to Cafardo what was said in the chat, but we’d venture to guess it was the opposite of a pat on the back.
“If I were there right now, I’d punch you right in the mouth,” Bobby V told Glenn Ordway, host of “The Big Show,” earlier today.
The threat was made in a joking manner, and Ordway had just asked Valentine if he was “checked out” for the rest of the season, but baseball teams typically don’t like their managers spouting off on the airwaves.
This is all adds to the growing assumption that Bobby V will be canned sometime near the end of the year.
Former Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi is up for grabs this offseason, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says that as many as nine suitors are interested in bringing the righty aboard. While the Red Sox are eager to retain Eovaldi’s services after his lights-out performance during their recent postseason run, they’ll have to contend with the Brewers, Phillies, Braves, White Sox, Padres, Blue Jays, Giants, and Angels — all of whom are reportedly positioned to offer something for the starter this winter.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the 28-year-old in 2018, however. After losing his 2017 season to Tommy John surgery, he underwent an additional procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow in March and didn’t make his first appearance until the end of May. He was flipped for lefty reliever Jalen Beeks just prior to the trade deadline and finished his season with a combined 6-7 record in 21 starts, a 3.81 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, and 8.2 SO/9 through 111 innings.
Despite his numerous health issues over the last few years, Eovaldi raised his stock in October after becoming a major contributor during the Red Sox’ championship run. He contributed two quality starts in the ALDS and ALCS and returned in Games 1-3 of the World Series with three lights-out performances in relief — including a six-inning effort in the 18-inning marathon that was Game 3.
A frontrunner has yet to emerge for the righty this offseason, but Cafardo points out that the nine teams listed so far might just be the tip of the iceberg. Still, he won’t be the most sought-after starter on the market, as former Diamondbacks southpaw Patrick Corbin is expected to command an even bigger payday following his career-best 6.0-fWAR performance in 2018.