A major league source confirmed the Red Sox reached an agreement with lefthander Dana Eveland on a minor league contract. The deal, which would pay Eveland $900,000 if he’s in the major leagues, includes an invitation to big league camp.
After he missed all of 2013 while recovering from Tommy John surgery, Eveland delivered the best major league performance of his career with the Mets in 2014. In 30 appearances out of the bullpen (where he’s made 83 of his 144 career appearances), Eveland went 1-1 with a 2.63 ERA, 27 strikeouts, and six walks in 27 1/3 innings.
A slightly lower arm slot than he’d used in parts of eight previous big league seasons allowed his stuff – particularly his slider – to play up, making him an effective bullpen option in New York.
Though lefthanded, he posted strong numbers against both lefties (.241 average, .305 OBP, .296 slugging mark, struck out 28.8 percent of batters) and righties (.216/.286/.373, 17.9 percent strikeout rate).
Despite that strong performance in 2014, the Mets let the 31-year-old walk largely due to concerns about the health of his elbow, according to an industry source. The lefthander’s need for down time and questions about his ability to work on back-to-back days led to his availability on a minor league deal.
Eveland adds to the Red Sox’ lefthanded relief depth. The Red Sox have four lefthanded relievers – Craig Breslow, Drake Britton, Edwin Escobar, and Tommy Layne – on the 40-man roster.