With the start of September teams always begin making additions to their active rosters for the season’s final month. It’s an annual rite of passage when it comes to the game. Four players were recalled by the Boston Red Sox earlier today, all of whom were among the team’s expected additions. Third baseman Brandon Snyder was activated off the disabled list. Catcher Ryan Lavarnway and right-hander Rubby De La Rosa were recalled from Triple-A. Quintin Berry also had his contract purchased from Triple-A.
Right-hander Daniel Bard was designated for assignment in order to make room on the 40-man roster for Berry.
Lavarnway’s split his time between Boston and Pawtucket over the past two seasons and just might be a bigger piece of the team’s catching plans starting next season. He saw some time with Boston earlier this season already, with David Ross on the DL with a concussion. Lavarnway hit .283/.323/.383 in 65 PA during that stint, but batted just .250/.346/.350 in 214 PA in the minor leagues. He’ll give the team a third catcher and some added flexibility over the season’s final few weeks.
De La Rosa has also seen time with the Red Sox this season, making five appearances out of the bullpen. He’s struck out three, walked one, and allowed six earned runs (on two home runs) in 5.2 IP. With Pawtucket he’s made 24 appearances, including 20 starts, in which he’s gone 3-3 with a 4.26 ERA and 1.407 WHIP in 80.1 IP.
Snyder batted .209/.227/.419 in 44 PA with Boston before landing on the DL in early August with a sore elbow. The longtime minor leaguer had hit .261/.332/.454 in 277 PA with Pawtucket before originally getting called up by the team. He’ll offer some depth at both corner infield positions.
Berry, meanwhile, will act as an extra outfielder and some legs off the bench. Boston just recently acquired him from the Kansas City Royals, in exchange for right-hander Clayton Mortensen, with that very intent. Berry has spent the entire season at Triple-A – split between the Detroit Tigers and Kansas City organizations before landing with Boston. He’s never been much of an offensive threat, as he’s hit just .191/.309/.257 in 381 combined plate appearances on the year. His 30 stolen bases are a plus, as is his ability to cover some decent ground in the outfield, but he offers little else.
The end of Bard’s time with Boston was also expected, though it seemed as though the team would wait until the offseason before making such a move official. Bard will be eligible for arbitration this winter and it had become increasingly more likely that the Red Sox would likely non-tender him in December rather than give him a raise, albeit a minor one, from the $1.8 Million salary that he’s earned this season.
Bard made a pair of brief appearances out of the Boston bullpen in late April, allowing three of the six batters he faced to reach base in the inning of work that he’d complete. Aside from the three months he spent on the disabled list with an abdominal strain he’s spent his season in the minor leagues, but his time on the mound there hasn’t really gone much better. Bard’s thrown just 15.1 IP on the year between three levels, with a 6.46 ERA and a shockingly high 15.8 BB/9. His latest appearance came towards the start of the weekend, when he started his outing with eight straight balls. Control has become a major concern for Bard over the past season-plus.
Arbitration eligible and with an option remaining, it’s not out of the question to think that another team might risk a claim to acquire Bard. He once carried a lot of potential to the mound, so a team will likely take a gamble on him this winter via minor league free agency if he is ultimately cut loose.