Don’t sleep on Eovaldi deal, it’s a good one
Sometimes the best trades in baseball are the ones that are not made. With only two days to go to the July 31st non-waiver trading deadline, Red Sox President of Baseball Operations, Dave Dombrowski has already made two impactful deals as I write this and is not sitting on his hands. If there is a deal to be made that will improve the team that already has the best record in the game, he will.
“Dealin’ Dave,” as he is known around baseball, was going to do something for sure. He usually does. Over his 40 year career in the game, Dombrowski has built a reputation as a guy who gets things done.
The trade with the Tampa Bay Rays, that began this past Tuesday night and was completed the next morning, to acquire right-handed flame thrower Nathan Eovaldi in exchange for AAA lefty Jalen Beeks added a lot to the Red Sox rotation. Eovoldi has one of the top fastballs in the game and is slated to make his Red Sox debut this afternoon against the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park. While the Yankees and Orioles were putting the highly publicized finishing touches on a deal for O’s left-handed reliever Zach Britton, the Red Sox were quietly doing their own deal with Tampa Bay for Eovaldi. After going over the medicals for both players involved, the deal for the righty was completed at 10:15 a.m. on Wednesday morning and the Red Sox announced it to the public at 10:35 a.m.
“He has been pitching very well,” Dombrowski said of Eovaldi on Wednesday afternoon in the visitor’s dugout at Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
“He gives us depth and will step into the rotation at this time and can slip into the bullpen later as time goes on also. If that ends up happening then he can be a very effective pitcher. He has been part of a pennant race in the AL East before with the Yankees, he has that experience. There are a lot of things we like about him.”
Eovaldi was scheduled to pitch against the Yankees on Wednesday afternoon at Tropicana Field, but was scratched just 90 minutes before he was to throw his first pitch due to the trade. He joined his new teammates in Boston for the opener of the Twins series on Thursday and was still introducing himself to new teammates an hour before game time. He is scheduled to get a crack at the Yankees when he makes his second Sox start during the series at Fenway in early August. Eovaldi is from Alvin, Texas, the same hometown as another hard throwing right-hander, Nolan Ryan.
The Red Sox endured rain delays in each game of the recently completed series at Baltimore. While the Sox and Orioles waited out the two-and-a-half hour delay on Wednesday night at Camden Yards, a familiar face popped into the Red Sox radio booth unannounced to visit with my partner, Joe Castiglione, and me. It was current Orioles and former Red Sox GM, Dan Duquette, and he came loaded with stories to entertain us.
One of the stories was about a talk he once had with Ted Williams. Williams told Duquette that he heard Duquette went to Amherst College and asked about the school’s reputation as being one of the hardest schools in the country to get into. Duquette told him that it was indeed a hard school to get into. Williams told him he went to Amherst College also, but for flight school before he entered the war. Williams used to take batting practice at the team’s baseball field when he had down time from pilot training. Red Sox legend, Johnny Pesky, also went to flight school there. Duquette told us the Splendid Splinter said to him, “…well I went to Amherst also, but it couldn’t have been that hard to get into since Pesky went there too!”
The Red Sox finish up with the Twins this afternoon at Fenway at 1:05 p.m., then open a two-game interleague set with Phillies tomorrow night.
I will not be broadcasting those two games so I can be with my family after the sudden passing of my dad, Bill Neverett, in the early hours this past Friday morning. “Pops” was Nashua’s number one sports fan, a fixture at Holman Stadium and everyone’s friend.
Tim Neverett is in his third season as Red Sox Radio Play-By-Play Announcer for the WEEI Red Sox Radio Network throughout New England. Tim can be followed on Twitter @timneverett