Someone should probably step up to sign two-time All-Star and Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel, but what do I know.
There has been no collusion in Major League Baseball, so look for another explanation as to why 2015 American League Cy Young winner and two-time All-Star Dallas Keuchel remains unsigned after Opening Day. The 31-year-old left-hander rejected the qualifying offer from the Houston Astros, and has not had much in the way of concrete offers since hitting the open market.
If (read, when) the Major League Baseball Players Association walks out on the job, the 2019 offseason may prove to have been the tipping point in the players’ decision to strike. It is understandable that in an era driven by analytics and numerically-driven decision making, that a starting pitcher with nearly 1200 innings on his wing would have a hard time finding a massive contract offer. That does not do much to counter the argument that Keuchel is a proven winner who turned in over 200 very effective innings last year and has a strong track record in the postseason.
Keuchel doesn’t fit the dominant, flame-throwing mold of an ace teams expect to hold up well into his thirties, but he has a proven ability to generate weak contact and grind lineups down. Someone needs to open up the checkbook before the season gets much deeper. We still don’t have much clarity about a final landing spot for the lefty, but these five teams make sense for different reasons.
5. Boston Red Sox
Is it time to hit the panic button for the defending World Series champion Boston Red Sox after their starting rotation opened the season by allowing 22 runs and eight home runs in 15 innings?
Hard to say.
Kidding aside, the Red Sox should not be in a rush to panic-sign Dallas Keuchel. If he lingers on the open market into May, and the rotation continues to struggle, that’s where things could get interesting. Even if the Red Sox continue to struggle on the mound, they will remain a very unlikely landing spot for Keuchel, but injuries could force their hand.
The Red Sox do have a massive amount of money committed to their starting rotation, but it is a house of cards that could come down very quickly. There are legitimate reasons to be concerned over Chris Sale’s health and diminished velocity. It cannot be stressed enough that it is extremely early in the season to be assigning another $25 million in salary to the Red Sox rotation, but it’s not out of the question that a situation could arise that forces their hand.