The Boston Red Sox have serious doubts about the state of their pitching rotation -- Daisuke Matsuzaka is on the mend from Tommy John surgery, John Lackey is set to undergo that same operation, and Josh Beckett is engulfed in conditioning questions after the "fried chicken and beer" scandal that derailed the Sox' 2011 season.
According to Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston, the team is determined to do something about it, as adding a quality starting pitcher remains a key priority for the Sox going into spring training. Edwin Jackson, Roy Oswalt and Gavin Floyd are all possibilities.
Jackson, who went 12-9 with a 3.79 ERA last year for the White Sox and Cardinals, remains a free agent. Agent Scott Boras has been unhappy with the offers for Jackson to date, and he may look to get his client a one-year contract and a chance to showcase himself for 2013. A source tells Edes the Red Sox have "solid interest" in making such a one-year deal.
Oswalt, who turns 35 in August, posted a 3.69 ERA in 139 innings for the Phillies last year but missed a significant chunk of the season with back injuries. The Phils declined to bring him back, and the Red Sox are a candidate to pick him up, though a source told Edes he was "just guessing" Oswalt would prefer the Rangers or Cardinals. Floyd, who turns 29 on Friday, is under contract with the White Sox, for whom he's pitched the last five seasons. He went 12-13 with a 4.37 ERA last season. He's been an extremely durable starter in Chicago, making 30-plus starts in four consecutive years. Red Sox GM Ben Cherington has inquired about possibly trading for Floyd prior to the start of spring training.