The Red Sox sent off David Price in a trade and, even if he has escaped Tommy John surgery for the time being, Chris Sale‘s health is definitely a question mark. In light of that, Boston could really use some pitching depth. In light of that, they just announced that they have signed righty Collin McHugh to a one-year contract.
McHugh’s 2019 season with the Astros was cut short due to elbow problems. He ended last season with a 4.70 ERA and an 82/30 K/BB ratio in 74.2 innings spread out between eight starts and 27 relief appearances. He was better in his relief appearances than in his early-season starts. He was more regularly a starter between 2014 and 2017. In that span McHugh had a 3.70 ERA in 606.1 innings of work. He spent all of 2018 in the pen. He’s been pretty good, historically, at not giving up hard contact and at maintaining a pretty good K/BB ratio.
McHugh is certainly no sure thing given the state of his elbow, but he’s a reinforcement for a depleted Red Sox rotation.
Last night we learned that Red Sox starter Chris Sale will not undergo Tommy John surgery, though exactly what was ailing his elbow was not reported. This morning the Red Sox said that he has a flexor strain and that doctors have advised he wait another week before he starts throwing again.
His exact prognosis won’t be known once he starts throwing. If he does it without discomfort, he resumes his buildup for the season. If he has discomfort again, back to the drawing board it seems. Either way, he will definitely begin the year on the injured list.
Sale, who turns 31 years old at the end of the month, is coming off of the worst season of his career. Whether this one will top that one is yet to be determined.