The Boston Red Sox successfully acquired a fifth starting pitcher to complete their starting rotation on Thursday, signing free-agent right-hander Ryan Dempster to a two-year deal worth $26.5 million, according to Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston.
If the rotation stays as is, it would be expected that Jon Lester would still start at the helm with Clay Buchholz and the newly-acquired Dempster to follow. Felix Doubront and John Lackey—who missed the entire 2012 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery—would round out the rotation as Boston’s No. 4 and No. 5 starters.
The Red Sox rotation in 2012 wasn’t an easy watch. Nine Red Sox pitchers made starts, combining for a 48-72 record and a 5.19 ERA.
Yet the rotation that struggled so mightily last season has a relatively different look to it going into 2013. Josh Beckett was dealt midseason to the Los Angeles Dodgers, Daisuke Matsuzaka is currently a free agent, Daniel Bard and Franklin Morales will both likely start the season in the bullpen and Zach Stewart and Aaron Cook are no longer with the club.
There’s a chance that the new rotation helps Boston to a postseason appearance, but that may be a bold assumption at this point during the offseason.
But let’s be bold for a moment and make some further assumptions on what could happen in 2013 for each Red Sox starting pitcher.