Red Sox Sep 20, 2019; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; A detail view of Boston Red Sox hats and gloves at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Red Sox have landed their first big free agent of the offseason.

In somewhat of a surprise, it’s not Teoscar Hernández.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported Friday afternoon the Red Sox have signed former Chicago White Sox right-hander Lucas Giolito. The deal is reportedly for two years and $38.5 million, with an opt-out after the first season.

The Red Sox need multiple starters, and the 29-year-old Giolito is a solid if unspectacular addition with some upside. He posted a 4.88 ERA (5.27 FIP) with a 1.313 WHIP last season, although those numbers might be misleading. He had a good start to the year with the White Sox (3.79 ERA in 21 starts) before finishing out the year with stints for the Cleveland Guardians and Los Angeles Angels.

The Red Sox are undoubtedly hoping Giolito more closely resembles the pitcher who earned Cy Young Award votes from 2019 through 2021.

The signing caught some by surprise given the rumors the past couple of days that had the Red Sox close to a deal with slugging outfielder Hernández. That deal is reportedly close, although the two sides are apparently haggling over a fourth year in the deal.’s Chris Cotillo had reported earlier Friday that agents had told him the Red Sox were acting like a “small-market team,” in free agent negotiations this offseason. That had led some fans to question whether the team was committed to going after the starters it needs.

Fans were mixed on whether the Giolito signing is a good move for Boston.

[Jeff Passan, ESPN]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.