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Negotiations between Red Sox, Nathan Eovaldi reportedly 'intensifying'

MLB Trade Rumors logo MLB Trade Rumors 12/5/2018 Steve Adams, MLB Trade Rumors
a close up of a man in a baseball uniform throwing a ball © Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Talks between the Red Sox and free-agent righty Nathan Eovaldi are “intensifying,” Robert Murray of The Athletic reports (via Twitter). Fancred’s Jon Heyman suggests that talks could reach as high as four years and an annual value close to $17M (Twitter link). The Red Sox are one of many teams who’ve been prominently linked to the right-hander, who starred for them following a midseason trade from the Rays.

Eovaldi, 29 in February, has also been tied to the Astros and Yankees in recent days. He returned from Tommy John surgery in 2018 and delivered 111 regular-season innings of 3.81 ERA ball with 8.2 K/9 and 1.6 BB/9. The flamethrowing righty was particularly impressive with the Red Sox, for whom he pitched to a 3.33 ERA in 54 innings to close out the season before dazzling with a 1.61 ERA in 22 1/3 postseason frames. Eovaldi worked both as a starter and a high-leverage, multi-inning reliever in October, regularly pumping triple-digit fastballs as he became one of manager Alex Cora’s most trusted playoff weapons.

For the Red Sox, he’d presumably slot into the rotation behind Chris Sale, David Price and Rick Porcello, though some clubs have reportedly showed interest in utilizing Eovaldi in a high-leverage relief role. Given Boston’s uncertainty beyond the top three in the rotation — Eduardo Rodriguez, Steven Wright and Brian Johnson are among the options for the final two spots — it seems logical to expect that Eovaldi’s high-octane arm would serve to deepen the starting staff.

Beyond the three aforementioned clubs, Eovaldi has also reportedly drawn interest from the likes of the Padres, Brewers, Braves, Angels, Phillies, White Sox, Blue Jays and Giants.

Related slideshow: Top offseason storyline for every MLB team (Provided by Yardbarker) 

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