The Cleveland Guardians just saw Corey Kluber sign with the Boston Red Sox.
Former Cleveland Guardians ace and two-time AL Cy Young Winner (and borderline Hall of Famer), Corey Kluber has signed with the Boston Red Sox to a two-year deal, totaling a value of $23 million. The second year and its corresponding $11 million is a club option year. Another $2 million is incentive-filled for the 2023 season.
Should Kluber hit certain marks, he’ll earn $12 in total for this year. While it’s unknown if the Cleveland Guardians had an interest in Kluber, the Chicago Cubs and Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim were interested in him to some degree.
Should the Guardians have decided to pass on him, that would have been a mistake. Kluber is slowly returning to form, or a form, resembling his Cy Young years with the Guards. He’s not an ace anymore, thanks to injuries, but he’s a viable fourth or even third starter in a rotation and the Guardians did have a need for him.
In a lot of ways, he could’ve done for the team what Mike Zunino did, give the squad a stop-gap before the younger players were ready. In Zunino’s case, it’s Bo Naylor, in Kluber’s case, it would’ve been Logan Allen, Gavin Williams, and Daniel Espino.
By the start of the 2025 season, those three names should hopefully be carrying most of the load for the rotation, but none of them are ready, and the Guardians need starting pitching help.
The Cleveland Guardians rotation is light for the next season or two
Shane Bieber, Triston McKenzie, and Cal Quantrill are as good as any three-man rotation in the big leagues. It’s not them you’re worried about. It’s Zach Plesac and Aaron Civale. I’m not saying they’re bad pitchers, they’re not, they just seem to be consistent on days that don’t end in “y”.
Having someone like Kluber not only fortifies the back end of your rotation but it gives you the ability to flip Plesac or Civale for a potential bad to help out the lineup, or a few more prospects to further enrich the minor leagues.
Either way, Kluber would’ve been an asset for the squad. Not trying to sign him was a mistake, even if he was a bit overpaid.