Boston Red Sox

Tyler Thornburg reacts after giving up a three-run home run to Chicago White Sox first baseman Matt Davidson during the seventh inning at Guaranteed Rate Field. (Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports)

By Matt Dolloff,

Brace yourself. Tyler Thornburg is coming (back).

The eternally disappointing reliever is getting another shot with the Red Sox, avoiding arbitration with a one-year deal worth $1.75 million and $400,000 in potential bonuses for innings pitched. So obviously not a deal that’s going to affect the Red Sox financially at all, and not a surprise given he would’ve had to be traded or released to not stick around.

Thornburg finally made it back to the mound for the Red Sox in 2018. He missed the entire 2017 season after undergoing surgery to treat thoracic outlet syndrome in his throwing shoulder. The righty did not have a comeback for the ages, finishing with a 5.63 ERA and just 21 strikeouts in 24 innings.

Clearly, Dave Dombrowski doesn’t want to give up on Thornburg yet. He still has good stuff (maybe) and could be a candidate to lock down a late-inning role in 2019, IF he stays healthy. That’s a big fat IF for him.

The signing is definitely not worth freaking out about, but you’ll probably hear some of that on our very airwaves here at the Sports Hub. Thornburg’s return is severely low-risk and still has potential for high rewards for a bullpen that’s likely to be made over this offseason.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at

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