June 19, 2024

The 2024 season kicked off for the Boston Red Sox on March 28, closely followed by their Triple-A affiliate, the Worcester Red Sox, on March 29.

As Boston begins the season, there are uncertainties surrounding their pitching staff. While the starting rotation shows promise, it lacks established names. However, the bullpen shows potential to be a significant asset.

Concerns arise regarding potential issues like injuries and poor pitching, reminiscent of last year’s challenges. The Red Sox endured a tumultuous season due to such difficulties, and fans hope to avoid a repeat scenario.

Fortunately, the Red Sox seem well-prepared to address any depth issues that may arise in 2024.

Grant Gambrell - Baseball - Oregon State University Athletics

The current starting rotation for the Worcester Red Sox includes Cooper Criswell, Richard Fitts, Grant Gambrell, and Brian Van Belle, with Brandon Walter expected to join once he returns from the injured list. In the interim, newly acquired Naoyuki Uwasawa may take his place in the rotation. Walter and Criswell bring Major League experience, Uwasawa demonstrated dominance in Japan, and Fitts is highly regarded as one of Boston’s top pitching prospects.

Gambrell often flies under the radar, but his impressive performance throughout 2023, spanning from High-A to Triple-A, speaks volumes about his abilities. Meanwhile, Brain Van Belle may not always post eye-popping stats, but he reliably delivers five-plus innings of solid baseball every five nights.

Comparing the current rotation to the 2023 roster reveals a stark difference. Last year, the team heavily relied on Matt Dermody as the sole starting pitcher with MLB experience, excluding Whitlock and Paxton, who were in rehab— a situation that raised significant concerns.

In contrast, every member of the 2024 rotation is poised to serve as a viable call-up option at various points during the season.

Additionally, Worcester’s bullpen boasts an impressive array of talent. Brennan Bernardino, Joe Jacques, Zack Kelly, Cam Booser, Lucas Luetge, and Jason Alexander all bring Major League experience to the table. Bernardino’s standout performance in 2024 came as a surprise to many Red Sox fans when he was demoted to Triple-A.

Justin Hagenman’s outstanding 2023 season positions him as a potential game-changer, while Luis Guerrero stands out as a formidable closer prospect. Guerrero’s dominance in Double-A throughout last season, coupled with his impressive showing in the Future’s Game, hints at a bright future.

During the Spring Breakout game, Lou Merloni’s admiration for Guerrero was evident, highlighting his ability to consistently hit high speeds.

Although it’s not ideal for the Red Sox to dip into their depth frequently, injuries and performance fluctuations are inevitable. Fortunately, Boston is well-prepared to navigate such challenges with a blend of seasoned MLB talent and promising prospects. As the season progresses, pitchers like Guerrero inch closer to their debut, offering further reassurance.

While some fans may approach the 2024 season with skepticism regarding the Red Sox’s pitching staff, the depth provided by Worcester should instill confidence that the struggles of 2023 won’t be revisited— a significant positive for the team and its supporters.

Boston Red Sox Spring Training

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