After a 10-7 win against the Houston Astros last night, the Boston Red Sox found themselves in need of some pitching help. In response they called-up knuckleballer Steven Wright from AAA Pawtucket and designated outfielder Corey Brown for assignment.
This is not his first tenure with the big league club. Last year, Wright pitched for the Red Sox on four different occasions including one start. He was 2-0 with a 5.40 ERA while walking nine men and punching-out ten.
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On Sunday, Wright had a spectacular outing for Boston despite one blemish. Allowing one run on four hits one of which was a homerun, Wright saved the bullpen tossing four inning on 51 pitches walking just one man while fanning four.
Wright had not pitched for Boston yet this year, but he was called-up temporarily earlier this month. He has pitched well for Pawtucket in 13 starts holding his ERA down low at 2.76 over 84.2 innings of work. Despite working with an erratic pitch, Wright has shown great control walking just 19 men while plunking another one. Also, he has fanned 60 hitters while allowing only six homeruns making it clear that the knuckleball is working well. Wright will serve Boston as a long reliever while he is up with the big league club.
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On the other hand, Boston designated Corey Brown for assignment. The career .175 big league hitter is what some may call a AAAA player. He has clobbered 141 career homeruns in professional baseball, but only a pair of those came in Major League action. It was clear Boston did not want to use him as he made just three appearances for the big league club striking out in his lone at-bat. On Saturday, he made an appearance as a pinch-runner for the slowest player on the team — David Ortiz.
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This was definitely a smart move by the front office here. Steven Wright was already on the 40-man roster so it now stands at 37 men. This gives Boston some room to work with as far as September call-ups go as they can add up to three men who are not already on the 40-man roster. Of course they will need to add Ryan Lavarnway back to it since he is currently rehabbing an injury in Pawtucket but perhaps they could add Matt Barnes and Henry Owens to the list. In addition, Brown was seldom used and it is important to have plenty of stamina in the bullpen. If a game gets out of hand, now Boston can use Wright in long relief and save the bullpen from disaster.