John Lackey, Theo Epstein, Terry Francona

Red Sox skipping struggling John Lackey’s turn in the rotation

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Yesterday’s rainout forced the Red Sox to juggle their rotation and they’ve decided to skip John Lackey’s turn altogether rather than push everyone else back.

So now Lackey, who was the scheduled starter for the rained out game, will make his next start Tuesday against the A’s in Oakland.

Lackey has a 15.58 ERA through two starts, allowing 15 runs on 17 hits in 8.2 innings, and the Red Sox opted to skip him rather than the similarly struggling Daisuke Matsuzaka.

Lackey is making $15.25 million this season and is owed another $15.25 million in 2012, 2013, and 2014, so the Red Sox have little choice but to be patient with the 31-year-old right-hander. He has a 4.83 ERA through 35 starts with the Red Sox, allowing opponents to bat .283 with a .795 OPS after limiting opponents to a .263 batting average and .720 OPS in eight years with the Angels.

Braves ink Blaine Boyer to a minor league deal

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 2:  Relief pitcher Blaine Boyer #48 of the Milwaukee Brewers delivers to home plate during the seventh inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on October 2, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
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The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.

Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.

Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.

Report: Rays nearing a deal with Shawn Tolleson

ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 18: Reliever Shawn Tolleson #37 of the Texas Rangers pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals in the eighth inning at Busch Stadium on June 18, 2016 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
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Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.

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Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.

Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.