Despite solid start, Wakefield still bullpen bound


In his final start before giving way to Daisuke Matsuzaka in the Red Sox’s rotation, Tim Wakefield held the Orioles to two runs over 6.2 innings Sunday and afterward indicated that he’s unhappy about the impending move to the bullpen.
Terry Francona quickly tried to bring some calm to the situation by saying: “This is not us turning him into a reliever, this is us putting him in the bullpen until he starts again.”
While true in the sense that Wakefield will almost surely be back in the rotation as soon as the Red Sox need a fill-in for whatever reason, there are no actual plans for that in place.
Wakefield heads to the bullpen at 0-1 with a 5.40 ERA, .288 opponents’ batting average, and 16/8 K/BB ratio in 25 innings and Matsuzaka is scheduled to take his spot Saturday against those same Orioles after looking good on a rehab assignment.

Shawn Tolleson becomes a free agent

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The Rangers outrighted reliever Shawn Tolleson off the 40-man roster on Wednesday. Rather than accept the assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, Tolleson has opted to become a free agent, Rangers executive VP of communications John Blake reports.

Tolleson, 28, emerged as a closer for the Rangers in 2015, but his follow-up campaign this year was dreadful. He finished with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He eventually went on the 60-day disabled list with a back injury.

Despite the nightmarish season, it’s easy to see a team deciding to take a flier on Tolleson for the 2017 season.

Indians strongly considering starting Carlos Santana in left field sans DH

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 19:  Carlos Santana #41 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the third inning against Marco Estrada #25 of the Toronto Blue Jays during game five of the American League Championship Series at Rogers Centre on October 19, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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Indians slugger Carlos Santana hasn’t played in the outfield in a major league game since 2012, but the Indians are strongly considering starting him in left field for Game 3 of the World Series at Wrigley Field on Friday,’s Jordan Bastian reports. As the game is hosted in a National League park, there is no DH rule in effect, so the Indians might otherwise have to keep Santana on the bench.

Santana is hitless in six at-bats in the World Series thus far, but he has drawn two walks. He has overall not had a great postseason, carrying an aggregate .564 OPS in 40 plate appearances since the beginning of the playoffs. Still, during the regular season, he had an .865 OPS so he can certainly be a threat on offense at any given moment.