The Red Sox did not add to their bullpen at the 2019 MLB trade deadline, and it would appear that’s because Red Sox president of baseball operation Dave Dombrowski doesn’t view it as one of the team’s bigger problems.
“I have gone through the blown saves, and I know we’ve had a number of them, but really it hasn’t cost us as many games as what you would think throughout the year. Our bullpen has basically been fine,” Dombrowski said during an appearance on the NESN pregame show before Tuesday’s game against the Royals.
I mean, thats one way to look at it, but the numbers would tell a different story.
Boston’s 19 blown saves on the year were tied for the sixth-most in baseball entering Tuesday, while their 239 runs allowed by the bullpen are the ninth-most in baseball. But Dombrowski chose to instead focus on the pen’s recent success, headlined by stronger performances from Brandon Workman and Matt Barnes.
“And late in the game, Workman did a good job yesterday closing the game, Eovaldi gave up the home run, Barnes, I think is a little bit tired probably right now after the number of pitches he had thrown, but all-in-all he has pitched very well for us all year. So when we get to that point with those guys, and then you fill in with the two young lefties and Walden has done a good job in long relief, we have been fine,” Dombrowski said.
Dombrowski also noted that his team’s success will instead be decided by the starters, all of whom have left something to be desired of late, beginning at the top with Chris Sale, David Price, and Rick Porcello.
“But really, our club, if we are going to thrive, and thrive well, it’s going to be because of our starting pitching.”