Former Red Sox starter putting up Cy Young numbers with Tigers originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston
The Boston Red Sox' starting rotation has been the club's most glaring weakness through the early part of the season. As of Wednesday, the group has the third-worst ERA (6.10), sixth-worst WHIP (1.45), and fourth-highest batting average against (.278) in the league.
Meanwhile, an old friend is putting up Cy Young-caliber numbers in Detroit.
Former Sox left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez has been lights out so far this year for the Tigers. The 2018 World Series champion lowered his ERA to 1.57 (third-best in MLB) on Tuesday after tossing seven scoreless innings against the Cleveland Guardians.
E-Rod now boasts the second-lowest WHIP in the sport (0.79). Over his last six outings, he has allowed only two earned runs in 41 2/3 innings of work (0.43 ERA) with 41 strikeouts and only six walks.
While he was a solid mid-rotation arm during his six years in Boston, his production never came close to matching those elite numbers. His best Red Sox season came in 2019 when he went 19-6 with a 3.81 ERA and 1.328 WHIP in 34 starts (203 1/3 innings) to finish sixth in American League Cy Young voting.
Nonetheless, Rodriguez has put the league on notice with his recent performance, and the Red Sox should be paying close attention. If he stays hot, Detroit sells, and Boston buys at this year's trade deadline, he would make for a compelling candidate to boost a rotation that needs a capable arm at the front end.
Rodriguez signed a five-year, $ 77 million contract with the Tigers after the 2021 season. The 30-year-old is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in 2027, but he has a player option for 2024.