Red Sox Predicted to Spend $120 Million to Upgrade Starting Rotation

jordan montgomery

Getty The Red Sox could stand to make significant roster additions ahead of 2024. Signing Jordan Montgomery would be a good start.

The Boston Red Sox promised a “full throttle” offseason back in November to improve the team for 2024. The most significant signing they’ve made thus far, though, is a two-year, $38.5 million deal for starting pitcher Lucas Giolito. Could left-handed hurler Jordan Montgomery be the next free agent headed to Boston?

That’s what Peter Marzano of NBC Sports Chicago predicts will happen. On February 24, he provided thoughts on where the top remaining free agents would land ahead of Opening Day. Marzano thinks Montgomery will sign with the Red Sox for five years and $120 million.

“While they’ve sat on the periphery of the free agent market for much of the season, look for this to be Boston’s big splash,” Marzano said. “Struggling to keep pace with their AL East counterparts, acquiring Montgomery would shore up their rotation and keep them a bit more competitive with the Rays, Yankees, Orioles and Blue Jays.”

Across 32 starts in 2023 with the St. Louis Cardinals and Texas Rangers, the southpaw put together some of his best work on the mound. He posted a 10-11 record with career-best marks in ERA (3.20) and innings pitched (188.2). Montgomery also added a 1.19 WHIP with 166 strikeouts before helping the Rangers win their first-ever World Series title.

Red Sox and Montgomery Have Talked Recently

WEEI’s Rob Bradford shared on February 23 that the Red Sox were prioritizing Montgomery over other available pitchers. However, Bradford also said Boston was waiting for the Scott Broas client’s asking price to come down.

MLB Trade Rumors predicted on November 6 that Montgomery would land a six-year, $150 million deal. Boras and Co. have also been using Aaron Nola’s seven-year, $172 million contract with the Philadelphia Phillies as a benchmark in negotiations. Settling on a $120 million agreement would qualify as a significant price drop.

ESPN’s Buster Olney fueled the Red Sox-Montgomery rumors with a February 26 report. “The Red Sox had a Zoom meeting with Jordan Montgomery recently,” Olney said on X (formerly Twitter). “He’d represent an upgrade for their ‘24 rotation, and if signed to a long-term deal, could be part of the staff rotation. They certainly have the payroll flexibility to make it happen.”

Will Rafael Devers Get His Wish?

News of the Red Sox continuing to pursue Montgomery is probably making third baseman Rafael Devers happy. While speaking with reporters on February 20, he called on ownership and the front office to get Boston more help for 2024 via external acquisitions.

“They need to make an adjustment to help us players to be in a better position to win,” he said through an interpreter, via ESPN. “Everybody in this organization wants to win. We, as [players], want to win. I think they need to make an adjustment to help us win.

“I’m not saying that the team is not OK right now, but they need to be conscious of what are the [weaknesses] and what we need.”

Signing a dependable and productive hurler who just won the World Series would be a good start in appropriately supplementing the roster. Devers is under contract with the Red Sox until 2033 thanks to signing a $313.5 million deal ahead of the 2023 season. So, he’s invested in the long-term outlook of the club and is likely tired of finishing in last place.

Boston has occupied the American League East basement three times in the past four years. This includes both 2022 and 2023 where they produced an identical 78-84 record. Simply signing Montgomery won’t drastically change current division standings projections. It’d at least put the organization on a better trajectory, though.

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