Report: Joe Kelly “is clearly on thin ice” with the Red Sox

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This winter Joe Kelly joked (or at least it seemed like a joke) that he was going to win the Cy Young award for the Red Sox this season, but now he might be headed back to the minors at age 27.

Kelly failed to make it out of the second inning Monday against the Twins, allowing seven runs while recording five outs, and he’s now 1-4 with a 6.24 ERA in nine starts this season.

Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com reports that the Red Sox are thinking about demoting Kelly to Triple-A, with Eduardo Rodriguez likely tabbed as his replacement. According to McAdam “he’s clearly on thin ice” and Kelly may only have one more start to keep his job.

Kelly, who was acquired from the Cardinals last July as part of the Allen Craig/John Lackey trade, has a 3.78 ERA in 376 career innings despite being unable to turn his mid-90s fastball into a good strikeout rate.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.