The Indians and 2014 AL Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber have been in touch about a contract extension for most of the spring and FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal hears that talks are “progressing” with Opening Day just two days away.
Kluber, who turns 29 in April, is due to be arbitration-eligible for the first time next offseason and is under team control through 2018. He’s a unique case because of his age and track record, so you could understand if he tries to get some guaranteed money now rather than take the risk and wait. It’s unclear if talks will be tabled for the offseason if nothing gets done by Opening Day.
Kluber broke out with a 2.44 ERA and 269/51 K/BB ratio across 235 2/3 innings last season. He’s set to make $610,000 this year as a pre-arbitration player.
Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com reports that the Red Sox are nearing an agreement with pitcher Zack Godley. It is still unclear whether the contract will be of the minor or major league variety.
Godley, 30, was with the Tigers on a minor league contract but the club released him in early April. The right-hander pitched for the Diamondbacks and Blue Jays last season, amassing 92 innings with a 5.97 ERA and a 70/42 K/BB ratio. Godley was quite solid for the D-Backs in 2017, posting a 3.37 ERA over 155 innings, so the Red Sox are hoping to see that version of him.
The Red Sox need starting pitching depth with Chris Sale out for the year due to Tommy John surgery and Eduardo Rodríguez sidelined because of a positive COVID-19 test. Collin McHugh is also still on the mend from an elbow injury. The starting rotation at the moment includes Nathan Eovaldi, Martín Pérez, Ryan Weber, and Brian Johnson. It is certainly the club’s biggest weakness.
The Red Sox open up the 2020 regular season at home against the Orioles on July 24. Eovaldi would seem to be the one to get the Opening Day nod. Godley could slot in anywhere else in the rotation, from No. 2 to 5.