Red Sox Sign Free Agent 7-Year Veteran Right-Hander


Now that the Boston Red Sox know that starter Garrett Whitlock will be out for the long-term, they’ve hit the free agent market and have decided to sign a veteran major league pitcher with seven years’ service.

28-year-old Brad Keller spent the first six years of his career with the Kansas City Royals, and got off to a fine start in his first three seasons from 2018 to 2020, compiling a combined a 3.50 ERA in his first 360 big league innings. He’s struggled since then, however, compiling an overall 4.27 ERA and a 1.44 WHIP in his 6 years in KC heading into this season. 

The final straw for him with the Royals was walking nine batters per nine innings last season in 45 innings against a meager 6.2 K/9. He suffered from both a shoulder injury and then ultimately Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, for which he had surgery after the season. The Royals declined to bring him back after the 2023 campaign.

This year Keller signed a minor-league deal with the Chicago White Sox and made five appearances and two starts, recording a 4.86 ERA. He was designated for assignment last week.

He’ll now get another chance to show he’s healthy and try to re-establish himself as a viable major-league pitcher with the Red Sox. He'll likely pitch in long relief.

Boston has suffered some brutal blows to its pitching staff this season, first losing Lucas Giolito to internal brace elbow surgery, ending his season before it even began, and now seeing Whitlock suffer the same fate  with his pitching elbow.

Photo: © Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports