Before the Red Sox made headlines by acquiring All-Star pitcher Chris Sale, they traded first and third baseman Travis Shaw to the Milwaukee Brewers. In return, the Red Sox received relief pitcher Tyler Thornburg.
Thornburg will be a big boost to the back end of Boston's bullpen. Photo Courtesy of Getty Images
Shaw will give the Brewers a left-handed hitting third baseman which will move Jonathon Villar back to second. Shaw hit .242 with 16 home runs and 71 RBIs last season.
Also involved in the deal were minor leaguers Mauricio Dubon (INF), Josh Pennington (RHP) and a player to be named later or cash considerations, all going to Milwaukee. The young shortstop, Mauricio Dubon, ranks as the ninth best prospect in the Brewers system. The 21-year old righty, Pennington, falls outside of the Brewers top 30 prospect list.
Last year, Thornburg went 8-5 with a 2.15 ERA in 67 innings. He pilled up 90 strikeouts compared to 25 walks. Thornburg will be under team control for three more seasons.
With the addition to the back end of the bullpen, the Koji Uehara Red Sox era seems to be over. The Red Sox will role with Robbie Ross Jr., Carson Smith, Tyler Thornburg and Craig Kimbrel in the back of the bullpen.
As for replacing Shaw, it seems the Red Sox are confident in handing the job to Pablo Sandoval. Sandoval, who missed almost all of last year, has slimmed down significantly. With Holt more of a platoon option and Moncada gone to Chicago, there must be a lot of faith in Sandoval.