Roster in need of fresh reinforcements?

May, 5, 2012
BOSTON -- The Boston Red Sox roster may be in need of fresh bodies Sunday after the last two games against Baltimore.

The bullpen has eaten up 13 1/3 innings over the past two games, both losses. And while Clayton Mortensen (3 1/3 innings) and Scott Atchison (3 innings) helped save a few arms on Saturday in the 8-2 setback, they won't be available for long relief Sunday, if that situation arises.

Boston is carrying 13 pitchers, but one (Aaron Cook) is an extra starter who took the turn of Josh Beckett (strained lat) on Saturday. Clay Buchholz starts Sunday but he is averaging slightly less than six innings a start for his five outings this year, not to mention he'll be lugging an ugly 8.69 ERA into the outing, so the bullpen may have more work ahead of it.

But because there are 13 pitchers on the roster, that leaves only three extra position players, and Saturday, third baseman Will Middlebrooks wasn't available because of a stiff hamstring. That left only outfielder Darnell McDonald and backup catcher Kelly Shoppach on the bench, and managers generally keep the extra catcher on the bench just in case something happens to the starter.

So manager Bobby Valentine has been hamstrung in terms of substitutions.

Might there be a roster move or two coming on Sunday?

"I'm not sure," Valentine said after Saturday's game. "I don't know if we will have a roster move. I'll talk to (general manager) Ben (Cherington)."



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