The Boston Red Sox need that one ace to make their staff complete. Once they get that piece, the team will be serious contenders.
According to Jim Bowden of ESPN.com, during the winter meetings, the Red Sox and James Shields met to discuss a possible contract. However, since the winter meetings, the two sides, him and his agents, have not had any substantial talks.
Red Sox met with James Shields at the Winter Meetings but haven’t had substantive talks with him or his agent according to a source
— Jim Bowden (@JimBowden_ESPN) January 4, 2015
Last season with the Kansas City Royals, Shields helped the team work their way to the World Series, ultimately losing to the San Francisco Giants, who are reportedly not interested in signing the right-gander to a contract, in seven games. The 33-year-old pitched in 227 innings and went 14-8 with a 3.21 ERA during the 2014 campaign.
James Shields would be getting most of the money that Boston offered to Jon Lester, but not in the same ballpark as years, as well as a $5 million-plus decrease in AAV (average annual salary). Shields could very well still be a fit to sign with the Red Sox, however he would most likely court a five-year, $95 million deal. If the Red Sox were able to reel Shields in, they could be viewed as favorites to win the American League East.
Shields has proved himself to be one of the top pitchers in baseball as he has started 30-plus games in every season since his rookie year. He has also pitched in 200 innings in every season since his rookie year, as well, which is very impressive.
Troy Jones is an MLB writer for Baseball Essential.