Will the Boston Red Sox bring back a familiar face to fill one of their glaring needs with less than two weeks to go until pitchers and catchers report to spring training?
Red Sox chief baseball officer Craig Breslow has been on an offseason-long quest to find starting pitching and an impactful right-handed bat with positional versatility.
The former will not come via reunion in all likelihood but the latter could be down to a pair of former Red Sox outfielders. The Red Sox “like” free-agent outfielder Tommy Pham, the New York Post’s Jon Heyman wrote so elegantly on Friday.
Pham hit .256 with 46 extra-base hits including 16 home runs, 68 RBIs and a .774 OPS in 129 games between the New York Mets and Arizona Diamondbacks last season. He posted a 111 OPS+ in 2023 — meaning his offensive production was 11% better than league average — and was a key member of the World Series runner-up Diamondbacks down the stretch.
With the Red Sox, Pham hit .234 with 18 extra-base hits including six home runs, 24 RBIs and a .672 OPS in a short 53-game sample size to conclude the 2022 season.
At this juncture, the right-handed bat addition could come down to Pham or outfielder Adam Duvall — who has been heavily linked back to Boston. MassLive’s Chris Cotillo reported that Garrett Cooper could be in the mix as well.
Pham proved to be a middle-of-the-order bat for the Diamondbacks and could be effective during a second stint in Boston but is not the marquee addition fans were hoping for entering the offseason.