Red Sox Manager Alex Cora announced that Eduardo Rodriguez will be the 2021 Opening Day Starter. Cora announced the decision last Wednesday night after Boston beat Minnesota 9-1 in a Spring Training game earlier that day. Rodriguez pitched five innings in that game, only giving up two hits and one earned run. He also recored six strikeouts. With Rodriguez named Opening Day starter, Cora is signaling that E-Rod may be the Sox new ace.
Eduardo made his MLB debut on May 28, 2015. He has been a member of the Red Sox for his whole career. Rodriguez has put together a solid career so far with a 51-31 career and a career ERA of 4.03. He has also recorded 707 strikeouts and given up 313 earned runs with 247 allowed walks.
A native of Valencia, Venezuela, Rodriguez was born on April 7, 1993. Seeing him back on the mound this season is encouraging. Rodriguez had to take almost a year off after a heart condition called myocarditis sidelined him for the whole 2020 season. Seeing the left-handed pitcher make his return this spring has been a feel-good moment for all baseball fans, no matter what team they cheer for. Rodriguez said in an interview after his return “I really enjoyed being back out there. After the first couple of pitches, I realized that everything is all right.”
Rodriguez Named Opening Day Pitcher…and Team Leader?
Rodriguez will need to be a leader for this young Red Sox pitching staff. With Chris Sale expected to miss the beginning of the season due to injury, he is one of the more experienced starters for Boston. Pitching was the team’s biggest liability last season. Hopefully, Eduardo’s return will help strengthen the rest of the Red Sox rotation this year.
The Red Sox kick off the 2021 campaign on April 1st, hosting their division rival Baltimore Orioles. Rodriguez and the rest of the team will get to show what they can do against a team similar to them. Hopefully for Red Sox fans, Boston can do a better job of being competitive this season.