Peter Gammons of The Athletic storied potential names for an assortment of MLB teams with the Aug. 2 trade deadline looming. The one name he mentioned for the Boston Red Sox was Colorado Rockies reliever Daniel Bard.
When’s the last time you heard that name?
Bard’s last appearance with the Red Sox was in 2013, when he walked two batters in nine pitches. His struggle with the yips is well documented – he had a six-year hiatus from the majors including a two-year retirement because of it. But since 2020, he’s been back with the Rockies.
At the age of 37, Bard has his lowest career ERA. The 1.88 earned run average and 0.94 WHIP are a big reason his WAR (1.7) this season is the second best of his career. His slider gives opponents many problems this season, the opposing batting average against his specialty pitch is .094.
He also has 15 saves this season, and Boston has 14 blown saves this season. But since Tanner Houck took over the role in the month of June, he has six saves with a 1.54 ERA.
Gammons reported in the article that Boston is in the market for two right-handed relievers and that they will “likely be in” on trading for the familiar face. The only two Red Sox pitchers to have a better WAR than Bard this season are Nick Pivetta and Michael Wacha.
Boston is in second place in the American League East and at the top of the AL Wild Card picture at 42-31. Relief pitching seems to be the primary focus of improvement at the trade deadline. Colorado is last in the NL West this season at 31-42, so it shouldn’t be a surprise if they’re willing to sell quality players such as Bard for picks and prospects.