Jorge Alfaro opts out of minor-league deal with Red Sox

Veteran catcher Jorge Alfaro has opted out of his minor-league contract with the Red Sox and intends to test free agency, according to’s Chris Cotillo. The club now has 48 hours to decide whether to block the 29-year-old backstop’s opt-out by adding him to the active roster.

Alfaro, who turns 30 later this month, joined the Red Sox on a minors pact in January after being non-tendered by the Padres last November. Though the right-handed hitter did not make Boston’s Opening Day out of spring training, he elected to remain in the organization and has since torn it up with Triple-A Worcester.

Entering Thursday, Alfaro has batted a stout .320/.366/.520 with 13 doubles, two triples, six home runs, 30 RBIs, 22 runs scored, four stolen bases, nine walks, and 43 strikeouts in 43 games (191 plate appearances) with the WooSox. Defensively, the native Colombian has allowed six passed balls and has thrown out five of 35 would-be base stealers while splitting time behind the plate with Caleb Hamilton and Ronaldo Hernandez. He has also made two starts at first base.

Despite the strong offensive performance, it does not appear as though the Red Sox are keen on adding Alfaro to their 26-man group. That being the case because they are comfortable with the tandem of Connor Wong and Reese McGuire and do not intend on carrying a third catcher at this time.

When speaking with reporters (including Cotillo) prior to Wednesday’s loss to the Reds at Fenway Park, Red Sox manager Alex Cora acknowledged that Alfaro would be a tough fit on the roster as things stand now.

“He’s swinging the bat well,” Cora said. “We’ll see where we’re at. Obviously, right now, we’re very comfortable with Reese and Wong. There’s (another) 29 teams out there. They might have a chance or not. In a selfish way, hopefully, nobody wants him. As a person and a player, I would love him to be in the big-leagues, either with us or somebody else. It’s where we’re at right now. We’re very comfortable with these two guys. I’ll repeat myself.”

As noted by Cotillo, the Red Sox will presumably wait until the 48-hour deadline to make their official decision on Alfaro. That way, they can protect themselves in the event that either Wong or McGuire suffer some sort of injury in the interim.

If Alfaro does indeed leave the organization, though, Hamilton and Hernandez would emerge as the top two catching options for the WooSox while Stephen Scott and Nathan Hickey are right behind them at Double-A Portland.

(Picture of Jorge Alfaro: Erica Denhoff/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)


Red Sox’ Jorge Alfaro has unique clause in contract that could make him available to all other teams later this month

Red Sox catcher Jorge Alfaro has a unique clause in his contract that could complicate his future with the club, according to’s Chris Cotillo.

Alfaro signed a minor-league contract with the Red Sox in January that came with an invite to major-league spring training. It has since been revealed that the deal also comes with an “upward mobility” clause that would go into effect on March 25.

As noted by Cotillo, this differs from a standard opt-out. It instead allows Alfaro to secure a major-league opportunity elsewhere if the Red Sox are not willing to give him one. If Alfaro is not added to Boston’s 40-man roster by March 25, he can request to become available to all 29 other teams in hopes of landing a big-league job.

If another club is interested in Alfaro, the Red Sox would then have 72 hours to either add Alfaro to their own 40-man roster or allow him to switch teams. If no other club is interested in Alfaro at the time of his request, Boston would be able to keep the 29-year-old without committing a 40-man roster spot to him.

Alfaro will soon be leaving Red Sox camp in Fort Myers to play for Team Colombia in the World Baseball Classic. The Sincelejo native has appeared in two Grapefruit League games so far this spring and has gone 3-for-6 (.500) with one double and two strikeouts.

After deciding against signing or trading for a catcher on a major-league deal this winter, the Red Sox brought in Alfaro as a non-roster invitee. The right-handed hitter is currently competing with Reese McGuire and Connor Wong for a spot on the club’s Opening Day roster. Because Alfaro can play first base and serve as a designated hitter, Boston could very well carry all three backstops on its 26-man roster come March 30.

More likely than not, though, the Red Sox will elect to carry the left-handed hitting McGuire and one of Alfaro and Wong, who both hit from the right side of the plate. Wong, who suffered a left hamstring strain in Thursday’s 15-3 win over the Phillies, also has one minor-league option remaining, meaning he can be shuttled between Triple-A Worcester and Boston up to five times this season. The same cannot be said for Alfaro, who is out of options.

A veteran of seven major-league seasons between the Phillies, Marlins, and Padres, Alfaro possesses intriguing power, athleticism, arm strength, and speed. With San Diego last year, he ranked in the 97th percentile of all big-leaguers in max exit velocity (115.2 mph), the 96th percentile in average pop time to second base (1.89 second), and the 85th percentile in average sprint speed (28.7 feet per second), per Baseball Savant.

On the other side of the coin, though, Alfaro does own a rather high career strikeout rate of 34.1 percent to go along with a career walk rate of just 4.2 percent. The 6-foot-3, 230-pounder has also had his issues as a receiver after leading the National League in passed balls in each of the last two seasons.

Alfaro, who does not turn 30 until June, will have the next three-plus weeks to determine what his immediate future looks like. That being said, Wong’s status moving forward could impact his decision. Additionally, depending on how things play out in spring games (and in the World Baseball Classic) Alfaro could draw interest from catcher-needy teams who would be willing to guarantee him a roster spot. If that happens, the Red Sox would then have to decide to either add Alfaro to their own roster or let him go.

If Alfaro remains with Boston past March 25 without being added to the big-league roster, he would have the ability to opt out of his deal on June 1 and July 1 in order to test free agency. If Alfaro is in the majors with the Red Sox at some point this season, he would earn a base salary of $2 million.

(Picture of Jorge Alfaro: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox sign slugging first baseman/outfielder Daniel Palka to minor-league deal

The Red Sox have signed free agent first baseman/outfielder Daniel Palka to a minor-league contract, the club announced on Friday. The deal comes with an invite to major-league spring training.

Palka, 31, spent the 2022 season in the Mets organization. The left-handed hitter batted .263/.344/.506 with 18 doubles, 26 home runs, 79 RBIs, 68 runs scored, 48 walks, and 105 strikeouts in 109 games (445 plate appearances) with Triple-A Syracuse.

“Power. Controls the strike zone,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said of Palka when speaking with reporters (including’s Christopher Smith) on Friday. “For as much power as he has, he doesn’t strike out as much. So he’s here. He says he’s ready to play. … He’s another guy who has big-league experience and is a good bat. And I’m glad that we got him.

A native of South Carolina, Palka was originally selected by the Diamondbacks in the third round of the 2013 amateur draft out of Georgia Tech. He was traded to the Twins in 2015 and was claimed off waivers by the White Sox in November 2017 before debuting for Chicago the following April.

As a 26-year-old rookie, Palka burst onto the scene in 2018 by slashing .240/.294/.484 with 15 doubles, three triples, a team-leading 27 home runs, 67 RBIs, 56 runs scored, two stolen bases, 30 walks, and 153 strikeouts across 124 games (449 plate appearances) for the White Sox. He finished fifth in American League Rookie of the Year voting that fall.

For whatever reason, Palka took a step backward in 2019. He appeared in just 30 games for the South Siders that year and mustered a .107/.194/.179 slash line to go along with two homers, four runs driven in, four runs scored, eight walks, and 35 strikeouts over 93 total trips to the plate. The White Sox designated him for assignment that November and released him in July 2020.

Since being cut loose by the White Sox, Palka has not gotten back to the major-leagues. He played for the Samsung Lions of the Korean Baseball Organization during the latter half of the 2020 season before returning to affiliated ball with the Nationals in 2021.

All told, Palka is a lifetime .218/.277/.433 hitter with 29 home runs and 71 RBIs in 154 career big-league games (all with the White Sox). At the Triple-A level, he owns a career line of .261/.349/.486 with 98 home runs and 293 RBIs in 477 games across four different organizations.

Defensively, Palka has past experience at first base and all three outfield spots. With the Syracuse Mets last year, the 6-foot-2, 230-pounder logged 354 2/3 innings at first, 58 2/3 innings in left, and 160 innings in right.

Palka, who turns 32 in October, has been assigned to Triple-A Worcester. There, he figures to provide Boston with some power-hitting depth who is capable of playing fist base and both corner outfield spots when needed. It does not appear as though the club signed him out of necessity or to address a specific need, but rather to fill in the gaps when other players at camp leave for the World Baseball Classic next month.

“I think this is more about the scouting department just adding to the equation,” said Cora. “It’s not needs or whatever. It’s just getting deeper. And that’s the most important thing. I don’t know how much we’re going to add in the upcoming weeks.

“But I know they’re working hard to see who’s out there, what we can bring to the equation or who wants to come here,” he added. “At the end of the day, all those guys that have some big-league experience but don’t have contracts, it’s up to them sometimes. And I’m glad that he’s here.”

With the addition of Palka, the Red Sox now have 64 players at major-league spring training. They will need to trim that number down to 26 by Opening Day.

(Picture of Daniel Palka: Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)

Red Sox bring back outfielder Marcus Wilson on minor-league deal

The Red Sox have signed free agent outfielder Marcus Wilson to a minor-league contract, per the club’s transactions log on

This will mark Wilson’s second stint with the Red Sox organization. The former second-round draft pick was originally acquired from the Diamondbacks in the April 2019 trade that sent catcher Blake Swihart to Arizona.

After splitting the remainder of the 2019 minor-league season between (then) High-A Salem and Double-A Portland, Wilson was added to Boston’s 40-man roster that November in order to receive protection from the Rule 5 Draft. Despite being on the Sox’ 40-man roster for the entirety of the COVID-shortened 2020 campaign, the California native was a limited participant at the club’s alternate training site in Pawtucket.

Wilson broke camp with Triple-A Worcester the following spring. The right-handed hitter batted .242/.370/.452 with 10 doubles, three triples, 10 home runs, 30 RBIs, 34 runs scored, 10 stolen bases, 41 walks, and 88 strikeouts over 64 games (265 plate appearances) for the WooSox before somewhat surprisingly being designated for assignment at the end of July.

The Mariners quickly claimed Wilson off waivers in early August, and he spent the rest of the 2021 season with the club’s Triple-A affiliate in Tacoma, Wash. That October, however, Wilson was again designated for assignment. He cleared waivers this time around and was outrighted off Seattle’s 40-man roster.

As such, Wilson returned to Tacoma for the start of the 2022 season. He slashed .209/.336/.469 with 11 doubles, two triples, 12 homers, 34 runs driven in, 33 runs scored, eight stolen bases, 35 walks, and 82 strikeouts in 59 games (238 plate appearances) for the Rainiers before getting called up by the Mariners for the first time last June.

In what was his major-league debut, Wilson went 1-for-5 with one run scored, one walk, and four strikeouts across three games for Seattle. He was then optioned back to Tacoma on July 7, but was designated for assignment at the end of the month. The 26-year-old once again cleared waivers and closed out the 2022 campaign in Tacoma before electing for minor-league free agency in October.

Wilson, who turns 27 in August, should provide the Red Sox with some upper-minors outfield depth this season. It has yet to be determined if he will start the year in Portland or Worcester, though he could be behind other experienced outfielders like Raimel Tapia, Greg Allen, and Narciso Crook on the club’s organizational depth chart.

For his career at the Triple-A level, Wilson is a lifetime .230/.355/.441 hitter with 30 home runs, 99 RBIs, and 29 stolen bases over 194 games (792 plate appearances). In 74 career games at Double-A, he is a lifetime .225/.324/.425 hitter with 10 home runs, 29 RBIs, and nine stolen bases across 278 trips to the plate. The 6-foot-2, 198-pounder also has past experience at all three outfield positions, so he can be considered versatile in that regard.

(Picture of Marcus Wilson: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox’ Jorge Alfaro not yet at camp due to visa issues

Jorge Alfaro has yet to report to Red Sox camp in Fort Myers. The veteran catcher is currently dealing with visa issues, manager Alex Cora told reporters (including’s Ian Browne) on Friday.

Alfaro was signed to a minor-league contract last month. The deal came with an invite to spring training as well as a $2 million salary if the 29-year-old backstop cracks Boston’s big-league roster this season.

“He’s not here yet,” Cora said at JetBlue Park. “But we found a few things defensively that we can help him to get better. He has a cannon and obviously, he’s a good athlete. He hits the ball hard.”

Last season with the Padres, Alfaro batted .246/.285/.383 with 14 doubles, seven home runs, 40 RBIs, 25 runs scored, one stolen base, 11 walks, and 98 strikeouts over 274 plate appearances. The right-handed hitter also averaged 89.4 mph on the balls he put in play while ranking in the 97th percentile of all major-leaguers in max exit velocity (115.2 mph), per Baseball Savant.

Alfaro spent his winter in the Dominican Republic playing for the Tigres del Licey. He appeared in just six regular season LIDOM games for Licey but turned it up a notch afterwards by posting a 1.105 OPS in the round-robin portion of the playoffs and hitting .421 (8-for-19) with two home runs in the championship series that he was named MVP of.

“He had a great winter down there in the Dominican Republic,” said Cora. “Just hoping that he gets here.”

Alfaro is now slated to play for his native Colombia in the upcoming World Baseball Classic. As such, the 6-foot-3, 230-pound backstop will have a limited amount of time to work with Jason Varitek and other members of the Red Sox coaching staff before Opening Day arrives next month.

“He’s going to the tournament, too,” Cora said in reference to the WBC. “It’s kind of like a small window for him to work with Jason, which is very important. But he should be OK.”

Once he does arrive at the Fenway South complex, Alfaro figures to compete with Connor Wong — who also hits from the right side of the plate — for a spot on Boston’s Opening Day roster as the No. 2 catcher behind the left-handed hitting Reese McGuire. For what it’s worth, Alfaro and McGuire are both out of minor-league options while Wong has one remaining.

If Alfaro fails to break camp with the Red Sox and accepts his assignment to Triple-A Worcester, he will have the ability to opt out of his deal and return to free agency if he is not called up by June 1 or July 1 at the latest.

(Picture of Jorge Alfaro: Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

Red Sox sign left-hander Cam Booser to minor-league deal

The Red Sox have signed free agent left-hander Cam Booser to a minor-league contract, per the club’s transactions log on

Booser, 30, spent the first half of the 2022 season in the Diamondbacks organization after signing a minors pact with Arizona last February. The lefty posted a 6.48 ERA and 6.60 FIP with 30 strikeouts to 22 walks in 19 relief appearances (25 innings) for Double-A Amarillo before being released by the Sod Poodles in July.

Less than a month after getting cut loose by the Diamondbacks, Booser latched on with the Lancaster Barnstormers of the independent Atlantic League. He appeared in 13 games for Lancaster down the stretch and pitched to a 4.63 ERA with 15 strikeouts to six walks over 11 2/3 innings of work.

A native of the Seattle-area, Booser has had an interesting journey in professional baseball. He originally attended the esteemed Oregon State University, but he underwent Tommy John surgery after his freshman year and missed the entirety of his sophomore season as a result.

After transferring to Central Arizona College as a junior, Booser was passed over in the 2013 amateur draft. He then signed with the Twins as an undrafted free agent and made his pro debut in the Gulf Coast League that August. Booser did not graduate past the rookie-ball level until the onset of the 2015 campaign.

In 32 appearances for Class-A Cedar Rapids that year, Booser forged a 3.72 ERA and 3.57 xFIP to go along with 64 strikeouts to 40 walks across 46 2/3 innings of relief. He was named a Midwest League All-Star for his efforts, but that success did not carry over into 2016. Booser instead struggled to an 8.53 ERA (6.24 FIP) in 21 total outings (25 1/3 innings) between Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers.

The following June, Booser was handed down a 50-game suspension for testing positive for a drug of abuse for the second time (he was previously suspended for testing positive for marijuana in 2015). Over the course of the 2017 season, Booser pitched in just three games. He elected to retire from baseball that November.

“I needed a break,” Booser told The Athletic’s Zach Buchanan back in April. “I needed, for my own mental side, to get away and figure out who I was off the field.”

And so Booser returned home to join a carpenters union. He worked construction around northwest Washington state and gave baseball lessons on the side.

In late 2020, Booser got the itch to pitch again and began throwing off a mound at a local facility. He started to work with current Mets pitching coordinator and former Driveline Baseball instructor Kyle Rogers before landing a contract with the Chicago Dogs of the independent American Association in July 2021.

Booser impressed with Chicago (1.93 ERA in 21 1/3 innings) and leveraged his performance there into a minor-league deal with the Diamondbacks as soon as he was officially released by the Twins last winter. During his time with Arizona’s Double-A affiliate, the 6-foot-3, 225-pound southpaw sat in the high-90s and topped out at 100 mph with his four-seam fastball. He also works with a low-90s cutter and mid-80s slider.

Booser, who turns 31 in May, has been assigned to Double-A Portland. He should provide Sea Dogs manager Chad Epperson with another left-handed relief option to complement the likes of Skylar Arias and Brendan Cellucci, among others.

(Picture of Cam Booser: John E. Moore III/Getty Images)

Former Red Sox catcher Kevin Plawecki signs minor-league deal with Pirates

Former Red Sox catcher Kevin Plawecki has signed a minor-league contract with the Pirates, the club announced on Sunday. The deal includes an invite to big-league spring training and a salary of $1.5 million if Plawecki makes it to the majors with Pittsburgh, per WEEI’s Rob Bradford.

Plawecki, who turns 32 later this month, spent the better part of the last three seasons with the Red Sox after originally signing with the club as a free agent in January 2020. He primarily served as Christian Vazquez’s backup before being somewhat surprisingly designated for assignment — and subsequently released — by Boston last September.

At that time, the Red Sox were already looking ahead to 2023 and wanted to get Connor Wong and the recently-acquired Reese McGuire as many reps as possible behind the plate. In order to accomplish that, they elected to move on from Plawecki, though that decision was not a popular one among other veterans in the clubhouse.

“It was very difficult,” Rich Hill told’s Chris Cotillo. “Throughout the clubhouse, it was a tough one for everybody. What everybody sees out in the field and in the dugout… what you don’t realize is the humanity side of this game. We’re not just all numbers. We’re human beings. And removing a guy like that from the clubhouse is a big hit for a lot of guys. I would say everybody in here.”

After batting just .217/.287/.287 with one home run and 12 RBIs in 60 games (175 plate appearances) with the Red Sox last year, Plawecki latched on with the Rangers and appeared in three games for the club before the 2022 campaign came to a close. Between Boston and Texas, he threw out just five of 51 possible base stealers.

In his three seasons with the Red Sox from 2020-2022, Plawecki slashed .270/.333/.364 with 20 doubles, one triple, five homers, 44 runs driven in, 107 runs scored, one stolen base, 31 walks, and 68 strikeouts over 148 total games (437 plate appearances). The right-handed hitter also gained notoriety for his role in Boston’s laundry cart home run celebration and his walk-up song (Calum Scott’s remix of “Dancing On My Own”), which ultimately served as the club’s anthem during their run to the American League Championship Series in 2021.

By signing with the Pirates, Plawecki will presumably be competing for a spot on Pittsburgh’s bench behind the likes of Austin Hedges and prospect Endy Rodriguez, who are currently the only two backstops on the club’s 40-man roster. The Bucs will also have fellow catchers Carter Bins, Henry Davis, Jason Delay, and Tyler Heineman in camp as non-roster invitees.

Plawecki becomes the second member of the 2022 Red Sox to join the Pirates organization this offseason, as Hill previously inked a one-year, $8 million deal with Pittsburgh back in December.

(Picture of Kevin Plawecki: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Former Red Sox lefty Kyle Hart agrees to minor-league deal with Phillies

Former Red Sox left-hander Kyle Hart has agreed to terms on a minor-league contract with the Phillies, according to’s Chris Cotillo. It is unclear if the deal comes with an invite to major-league spring training.

Hart, 30, was originally selected by Boston in the 19th round of the 2016 amateur draft out of Indiana University Bloomington. As an unheralded senior, the Ohio native signed with the club for a modest $5,000 and made his professional debut in the rookie-level Gulf Coast League that summer.

After working his way up the minor-league ladder in 2017 and 2018, Hart put together an impressive 2019 campaign in which he posted a 3.52 ERA with 140 strikeouts to 53 walks in 27 outings (24 starts) spanning 156 innings of work between Double-A Portland and Triple-A Pawtucket. That November, the Red Sox added the southpaw to their 40-man roster in order to prevent him from being selected in the Rule 5 Draft.

Hart entered the COVID-shortened 2020 season ranked by Baseball America as the No. 29 prospect in Boston’s farm system. He made his major-league debut that August, but struggled to a 15.55 ERA (19 earned runs in 11 innings) across four appearances (three starts) and was outrighted off the Sox’ 40-man roster in the fall of that year.

Since then, Hart has spent the last two seasons pitching in the minors. The 6-foot-5, 200-pound hurler forged a 4.22 ERA with Worcester in 2021 and followed that up by producing a 5.25 ERA with 74 strikeouts to 33 walks in 82 1/3 innings between the WooSox and Sea Dogs last year before reaching minor-league free agency for the first time.

In agreeing to a minors pact with Philadelphia, Hart will be joining just the second organization of his professional career. With that being said, it should be mentioned that Phillies president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski was at the helm in Boston when Hart was drafted by the Red Sox in 2016.

(Picture of Kyle Hart: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Rumored Red Sox target Roberto Pérez signs minor-league deal with Giants

Free agent catcher Roberto Perez has signed a minor-league contract with the Giants, the club announced Saturday. Perez will be at major-league spring training and will have the chance to earn $2.5 million with another $1.5 million available in incentives if he makes San Francisco’s active roster.

As was first reported by’s Chris Cotillo, the Giants agreed to a deal with Perez last Sunday. The Red Sox made an aggressive bid for Perez, per Cotillo, and were even in consideration at the end, but the veteran backstop ultimately thought San Francisco represented a better fit.

Perez, a veteran of nine major-league seasons, was limited to just 21 games with the Pirates last year due to a right hamstring injury that ultimately required season-ending surgery in May. The right-handed hitter batted  .233/.333/.367 with two home runs and eight RBIs across 69 plate appearances before his one-year contract with Pittsburgh expired in November.

While offense has never been Perez’s strong suit, he is still regarded as one of the top defensive catchers in baseball. During an eight-year (2014-2021) run in Cleveland, the native Puerto Rican was named the Wilson Overall Defensive Player of the Year in 2019 and won back-to-back Gold Glove Awards in 2019 and 2020.

To counter a lackluster career OPS of .658, Perez Perez has thrown out 97 of 248 potential base stealers in his big-league career. The 5-foot-11, 220-pounder has accrued 79 Defensive Runs Saved in 4,052 1/3 innings behind the plate. He has also been among the game’s top pitch framers since Statcast first began tracking that data in 2015.

The Giants, at present, have just one catcher on their 40-man roster in Joey Bart. They also acquired versatile catching prospect Blake Sabol from the Reds in December’s Rule 5 Draft and have Austin Wynns slated to compete for a roster spot in spring training.

The Red Sox, meanwhile, have two catchers — Reese McGuire and Connor Wong — on their 40-man roster. They also have Caleb Hamilton and Ronaldo Hernandez, who were both outrighted earlier this winter, and minor-league signee Jorge Alfaro set to join them at big-league camp in Fort Myers later this month.

In all likelihood, Perez likely viewed his chances of making San Francisco’s Opening Day roster out of spring training more favorably, which is why he elected to sign a minors pact with the Giants over the Red Sox. Chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom addressed this very topic and the potential catching competition as a whole when speaking with Cotillo on The Fenway Rundown podcast last week.

“[Perez] saw a better opportunity out there and that’s OK,” Bloom said. “We’ve been talking about this all along. The two guys that finished the season for us in the big-leagues (McGuire and Wong), we really like. At the same time, we recognize that neither of them have carried this load at the major-league level before. They both have things to prove and experience they don’t have under their belts, so it made sense to add someone who’s decisively a frontline catcher or someone who can create competition in that mix.

“Alfaro’s really intriguing,” added Bloom. “Always has been in terms of what he brings to the table. Just having some of the loudest tools and the best physical ability. Somebody we feel we can help. [Jason Varitek] got pretty excited about the possibility of working with someone who has that kind of ability and creating some competition there.

“So, we’ll see how it goes,” he said. “Again, these other two guys have had a bit of a head start in working with our pitchers, working with our staff, and really understanding what we expect on a daily basis. And that means something. But, we wouldn’t have brought Alfaro in without wanting to see what he could do and seeing where this goes.”

(Picture of Roberto Perez: Justin Berl/Getty Images)

Red Sox agree to minor-league deal with right-hander Jake Faria

The Red Sox have agreed to terms on a minor-league contract with free agent right-hander Jake Faria, according to’s Chris Cotillo. The deal comes with an invite to major-league spring training and a salary of $735,000 if Faria makes Boston’s active roster.

Faria, 29, spent part of the 2022 season in the Twins organization. The righty posted a 7.48 ERA and 6.55 FIP with 39 strikeouts to 27 walks in 12 appearances (nine starts) spanning 43 1/3 innings of work for Triple-A St. Paul before getting released by the Saints in late June.

A native of California, Faria was originally selected by the Rays in the 10th round of the 2011 amateur draft out of Richard Gahr High School. At that time, Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom worked in Tampa Bay’s front office, so there is a connection there.

Faria was considered to be one of the top pitching prospects in the Rays’ farm system prior to making his big-league debut at the age of 23 in June 2017. He produced a 3.43 ERA in 16 outings (14 starts) as a rookie, but has not been able to replicate that same kind of success since then.

After pitching to a 6.75 ERA in 2018, Faria appeared to bounce back by putting up solid numbers (2.75 ERA) out of the Rays bullpen to begin the 2019 campaign. He was then traded to the Brewers that July in exchange for veteran slugger Jesus Aguilar.

Faria’s stint in Milwaukee proved to be a short one. He got shelled for 11 earned runs in 8 2/3 innings of relief (11.42 ERA) to close out the 2019 season and — after being outrighted off their 40-man roster — was released by the Brewers the following September.

Two months later, Faria signed a minors pact with the Angels. He started out the 2021 season with Los Angeles’ Triple-A affiliate in Salt Lake City but was cut loose by the club that June, only to be scooped up the Diamondbacks shortly thereafter.

Faria made his return to the big-league mound on June 19 and put up a 5.51 ERA (4.58 FIP) with 32 strikeouts to 13 walks in 23 appearances (three starts, 32 2/3 innings) for Arizona. He was designated for assignment exactly five months after making his Diamondbacks debut and elected to become a free agent after clearing waivers.

So, all told, Faria owns a lifetime 4.70 ERA (4.74 FIP) to go along with 185 strikeouts to 89 walks in 72 career major-league outings (29 starts, 203 innings) between the Rays, Brewers, and Diamondbacks. At the Triple-A level, he owns a career 4.49 ERA with 343 punchouts to 140 walks over 303 cumulative frames.

Listed at 6-foot-4 and 230 pounds, Faria operates with a four-pitch mix that consists of a four-seam fastball, a splitter, a curveball, and a slider, per Baseball Savant. It remains to be seen if the Red Sox envision Faria as a starter or reliever moving forward, but he will nonetheless have a chance to compete for a spot on the club’s Opening Day roster beginning later this month.

At the very least, Faria — who turns 30 in July — should provide Boston with some multi-inning, swingman-like depth at Triple-A Worcester this season. He becomes the 22nd player the Red Sox have extended a spring training invite to, joining fellow free agent additions like Matt Dermody, Norwith Gudino, and Ryan Sherriff.

(Picture of Jake Faria: Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)