The Boston Red Sox had a lousy bullpen in 2022.
They had the fifth-worst ERA in MLB with a 4.59 mark, and they lost leads countless times.
The front office, led by Chaim Bloom, recognized this and worked hard to improve the unit.
After a few additions, it’s safe to say the bullpen landscape of the Red Sox is night and day compared to this past season.
“Red Sox 2023 bullpen: Kenley Jansen, Tanner Houck, John Schreiber, Chris Martin, Matt Barnes, Joely Rodriguez ——————— Kutter Crawford, Zach Kelly, Ryan Brasier, Josh Taylor, Darwinzon Hernandez. Talk about a game-changer. I’d love another lefty, but they actually learned their lesson,” Red Sox analyst Tyler Milliken tweeted.
Red Sox 2023 bullpen:
Talk about a game-changer. I’d love another lefty, but they actually learned their lesson.
— Tyler Milliken ⚾️ (@tylermilliken_) December 7, 2022
Boston had added Martin and Rodriguez in past days, and they signed Jansen for two years to strengthen the unit even further.
An Improved Bullpen Is No Longer A Liability
Jansen is a proven closer with years of experience, and still has that beautiful cutter of his creating whiffs and soft contact.
They used Houck to start some games last season, but that won’t be the case in 2023 as he is expected to be a full-time reliever.
Martin may be a veteran at this point, but he is a very solid piece with postseason experience, as well.
Rodriguez is a lefty specialist who is not as vulnerable against righties as you might think.
He definitely has a place in a big league bullpen.
All things considered, and hoping that a few minor leaguers and unexpected arms contribute to the unit, Boston can say their bullpen does not look like a liability anymore.
If they can re-sign Xander Bogaerts and add an arm and a bat, it would be a dream offseason despite the sluggish start.
They still have time.