Red Sox Reunion Turns Sour: Reliever Returns, Urshela Exit Stings! - footballivenews
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Red Sox Reunion Turns Sour: Reliever Returns, Urshela Exit Stings!



The Boston Red Sox continue to augment their spring training roster in a bid to fortify their bullpen, with one particular player already actively engaged at Fenway South alongside the rest of the team’s staff.

Reliever Joely Rodríguez has inked a minor-league contract with Boston after the team opted not to exercise his option for the upcoming season last November. The news of Rodríguez’s re-signing was reported by Julian McWilliams of The Boston Globe.

Rodríguez endured a season plagued by injuries during his tenure with the Red Sox, limited to just 11 innings of play due to oblique strains, shoulder, and hip inflammation. Across this small sample size, he struggled, registering a 6.55 ERA with 13 hits, including two home runs, six walks, and 14 strikeouts.

With six years of experience in Major League Baseball and two seasons in Nippon Professional Baseball, Rodríguez showcased impressive performances in Japan, boasting a 2.30 ERA in 2018 and a 1.64 ERA in 2019. While his career ERA in the U.S. stands at 4.70, he has shown improvement in recent years.

Since his return from Japan, Rodríguez has recorded a 4.28 ERA and has struck out 25.5% of batters faced, albeit with a walk rate slightly above the league average. His proficiency in strikeouts and inducing ground balls could compensate for this.

Notably, Rodríguez adds a left-handed option to the Red Sox’s bullpen, an area where the team has been lacking, with Brennan Bernardino being one of the few southpaws in the mix. Rodríguez, alongside fellow left-hander Lucas Luetge, will vie for a spot on the pitching staff. Given the shortage of left-handed competition, one of them could secure a place on the major league roster.

Under the guidance of new pitching coach Andrew Bailey and pitching director Justin Willard, Rodríguez has the opportunity to flourish and refine his strikeout abilities further. The hope is that he can remain healthy and contribute his skills at Fenway Park this season.

However, the Red Sox experienced a setback on Thursday, failing to secure former Yankees third baseman Gio Urshela as a backup option for their infield. Instead, the Detroit Tigers snagged Urshela on a one-year, $1.5 million deal, leaving Boston to explore alternative options for infield depth, with Bobby Dalbec emerging as a potential candidate.

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