Every Major League Baseball team leaves spring training with the hope that they have assembled the best 25-man roster with the resources available to them. Those teams also know that all 25 of those players will not last the entire season. Attrition rears its ugly head for every club during the season. Injuries, futility, slumps and general ineffectiveness cause teams to call upon their minor league affiliates for relief. The following players have all rode the Red Sox shuttle to help patch holes on the MLB team:
Steven Wright Brings his Unpredictable Knuckleball to Boston – With spring training injuries to both Koji Uehara and Joe Kelly, Wright broke camp with the Boston Red Sox. Wright is flexible since he can pitch both out of the bullpen and as a starter. Because the knuckleball puts less stress on his arm he is also able to throw multiple innings out of the bullpen when needed. Wright has been up and down multiple times throughout the 2015 season.
The Promotion of Blake Swihart – The plan for this young stud was to develop in Pawtucket this year while Christian Vazquez and Ryan Hanigan handled things in Boston. Vazquez suffered a torn UCL which required Tommy John surgery, late in spring training, ending his season before it started. Ryan Hannigan broke his right pinky finger in early May causing the Red Sox to accelerate their plan for Swihart with his early callup.
Travis Shaw’s Brief Appearance with the Red Sox – The first baseman was called up for one day in May due to a David Ortiz suspension. He was then sent back to Pawtucket the following day. He has since been called up and sent down three other times this season. It is unlikely he’ll ever be a full-time player for Boston, but he’s serving a useful depth role as a shuttle rider.
Yoan Moncada and Rusney Castillo – The Cuban prospect was expected by many to break camp with the big league club but did not make the cut. With an injury to Shane Victorino, Castillo was called up in May to serve as depth for the Red Sox. He was then sent back to Pawtucket in June, and is still there. The outfielder should expect a call the next time an outfielder goes down with an injury.
The Call Up of Eduardo Rodriguez – The young southpaw was originally called up for a spot start in late May, but he pitched so well that the Red Sox were forced to keep him in the majors. Rodriguez has impressed in his first taste of the big leagues, and it seems that he is likely to stay in Boston for the foreseeable future.
Deven Marrero Got the Call – When Dustin Pedroia went on the disabled list with a strained hamstring, the Red Sox needed a backup infielder so that Brock Holt could start games at second base. The flashy shortstop remains with the team, but could be sent down in favor of an outfield bat.
What to Expect from Jonathan Aro – Promoted on the same day as Marrero, Aro‘s time with the Red Sox was much shorter. He only spent a week with the team, but could be called again when the Red Sox need an extra arm in a pinch.
Red Sox Pitcher Brian Johnson: He’s About to Rock – With the injury to Clay Buchholz, Boston needed a starter for a few turns through the rotation. Johnson has impressed this season in Pawtucket and was the next man up. His stay is likely dependent on his performance. If he can replicate the success of Eduardo Rodriguez, then he will likely stay with the club for a while, but could be sent down if he disappoints.
Lou Brown has previously applied his cat herding skills to accumulate Ian York‘s series about the Boston Red Sox pitching rotation’s repertoires and the trouble Mike Napoli has been having with the strike zone.
Follow us on Twitter @SoSHBaseball.