The Red Sox starting rotation exceeded expectations in the first month. The staff posted a 3.34 combined ERA, which ranks fifth in the MLB. Porcello leads the team in ERA, Sale leads the team in strikeouts, and Price has had his best start in Boston. However, Eduardo Rodriguez and Drew Pomeranz have both struggled mightily in their returns.
Pomeranz has only made two starts, and he usually takes time to get into his rhythm. In April, he posts a 4.09 ERA, but in August, he posts a 2.92 ERA. Pomeranz was the second best starter on the team last year, so things would have to get very ugly for him to be moved to the bullpen. However, if he does not rebound eventually, Cora will have no choice but to explore other options. I think he will figure it out because he usually does, but there is still no guarantee.
Rodriguez has more of a sample size than Pomeranz, starting five games with a 4.78 ERA. He is considered to have lots of “potential”, but he has not lived up to it so far. The best ERA he posted with the Sox was 3.85 in 2015, and his ERA has been in the 4’s after 2015. He has also missed substantial time due to injury, including the first few weeks of this season. With his inconsistent play and injury risk, it might be time for Alex Cora to make a change in the rotation.
But who would they replace him in the rotation with?
Valazquez put up a 2.25 ERA during his five-year stint in the Mexican league. He got his first major big league opportunity and has not disappointed thus far. The right-hander has a 4-0 record this year, including two starts. He also has been effective as an innings eater. On Friday, he threw for 3.1 innings, giving up no runs, which gave the Sox a chance to win. On Monday, he threw two innings, giving up zero runs, which was a big reason why the Sox won. Want to know who started those games that Velazquez bailed them out in? Drew Pomeranz and Eduardo Rodriguez. Interesting.
Will Alex Cora Do It?
After Friday’s game, the first year skipper was asked if he was considering a change in the rotation. He replied with a simple “no”. I get why, and I agree with his reasoning. Pomeranz and Rodriguez have not made many starts, so they do deserve time to rebound. Also, there is no guarantee that Velazquez keeps up the pace he is on. More scouting will come out on him, and he could cool down. I do not think a change should be made now, but it is something that Alex Cora should have on his mind for the future. I would put a deadline on June first for Rodriguez. If he still has a poor ERA, and Velazquez still has an outstanding ERA, then why not make the change?