The Boston Herald‘s Jason Mastrodonato says the Red Sox will at least be thinking about Johnny Cueto in rebuilding their rotation for 2016. Cueto, who turns 30 in February, is one of the top tier pitchers that will be on the market.
But Cueto in the off-season hasn’t been impressive, leading Kansas City Star sportswriter Sam Mellinger to hang a large “Buyer Beware” sign for whichever team ultimately signs him.
Mellinger wrote that in postseason games since 1903 no starter has ever given up eight or more earned runs while collecting six or fewer outs in a playoff game before Cueto’s performance in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series against the Blue Jays.
Certainly the Royals expected a lot better when they traded with the Reds for Cueto on July 26. He finished the regular season 4-7 with 4.76 ERA in 13 starts for Kansas City after going 7-6 with a 2.62 EA in 19 starts at the beginning of the year with Cincinnati.
There’s likely more postseason to come for the Royals, with more time for evaluation, but ultimately it will fall to Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski and his team to determine whether Johnny Cueto is worth Boston’s money and worth the risk.