Red Sox starter Josh Beckett made it through a bullpen session on Sunday morning without having any problems with his hyperextended left knee, according to Tim Britton of the Providence Journal.
As a result, the Boston ace has been medically cleared to participate in Tuesday’s All-Star Game.
Beckett has registered a dominant 2.27 ERA and 0.95 WHIP through 17 starts this season, tallying 94 strikeouts over 111 innings in a remarkable first half. He finished with a 5.78 ERA in 21 total starts last year, but is bouncing back in a big way. American League skipper Ron Washington will likely ask him to go two frames in the Midsummer Classic.
The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.
With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.
Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.