Yesterday, the Boston Red Sox activated World Series standout LHP Craig Breslow from the disabled list. Unfortunately, fan-favorite reliever RHP Brandon Workman was optioned to Pawtucket to make room for Breslow.
With the first season series against the New York Yankees coming up, having a dependable lefty like Breslow could help keep some balls in the park at the homer box in New York. During his rehab stint in Pawtucket, Breslow pitched 2.2 innings of scoreless relief, and will be ready for some short work in the upcoming weekend set.
Workman will be placed into the Triple-A starting rotation, but he will not be stretched out. Red Sox manager John Farrell believes the plan for Workman is to throw around 70 pitches per appearance in Pawtucket, and that the righty will be a part of the Sox formula later on in the season. That seems likely considering Workman’s success in the Major Leagues so far, and the Sox trend of having “all arms on deck” in both August and September under Farrell.
It is hard not to feel for a guy like Workman, who came out of nowhere last season to deliver great pitching performances in both September and October for the World Series-winning Red Sox. His versatility is both his greatest asset and failing. The club knows that they can call upon Workman to either start a game, or fill-in for a reliever because he has shown no trouble switching roles in his short, professional career. There may come a time where Workman is out of minor-league options and the Red Sox will be forced to make a decision about clearing him through waivers, or keeping him on the roster.
It would be hard to imagine them letting Workman ever get to the waiver-wire. For the mean time, he has to stick it out in Pawtucket and remember that he will be back in the big leagues in no time.