The Baltimore Orioles are rumored to be keeping a close eye on a veteran arm in free agency. In a report by Mark Feisand of the MLB Network, he said that Baltimore is seeking a “front-end starter,” who could be the No. 2 or No. 3 guy on the team's rotation, and Eovaldi seems to be a fit for that type of role.
— MLB Network (@MLBNetwork) November 22, 2022
The Orioles will be entering the 2023 MLB season looking to sustain the momentum they had in the 2022 campaign wherein they were among baseball's biggest surprises. After winning just 52 games in 2021, the Orioles turned things around and collected 83 victories in 2022, even having a whiff of the postseason.
Baltimore's pitching staff could use some help after ranking just 17th in 2022 with a 3.97 ERA and just 19th in 1.29. According to FanGraphs, Orioles starters in 2022 combined for just 7.2 fWAR, which is only 25th overall in the big leagues.
As for Eovaldi, he was offered by the Boston Red Sox a one-year qualifying offer worth $19.65 million but he declined it. The 32-year-old Eovaldi is just a year removed from making the All-Star in 2021, finishing that season with an 11-9 record to go with a 3.75 ERA and a solid 2.79 FIP. In 2022, he took a step back, coming up with a 6-3 record plus a 3.87 ERA and a 4.30 FIP.
Although he rejected the Red Sox's qualifying offer, it is also possible that Nathan Eovaldi is in the process of negotiating a multi-year deal with the same team. It remains to be seen whether the Orioles will push harder for Eovaldi.