Red Sox closer Andrew Bailey suffered a minor lat pull while performing vertical leap drills on one of the first days of spring training. But he has already moved past the injury and is ready to begin playing catch-up with the other relievers in camp.
According to WEEI’s Rob Bradford, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said Wednesday that Bailey has been cleared to face live hitters and could soon appear in his first Grapefruit League game.
Here’s Valentine, via WEEI.com:
“Bailey is ready. He threw the bullpen (session on Tuesday). The next time might be to a hitter, but it might be batting practice. We’re going to see how he feels. He might want to jump right into a game. He’s pain-free and feels like he’s throwing the ball fine.”
Bailey was acquired this offseason in a five-player trade with the A’s. The 27-year-old right-hander has registered a 2.07 ERA, 0.95 WHIP and 9.0 K/9 in 174 career innings. He also has 75 saves in 84 tries.
The Dodgers have reinstated first baseman Adrian Gonzalez from the 60-day disabled list after his recovery from a herniated disc. To make room for him they have optioned Rob Segedin to Triple-A Oklahoma City.
Gonzalez last played on June 11. Since then the Dodgers have gone an astounding 46-9, with shoe-in rookie of the year candidate Cody Bellinger handling first base duties and posting a .978 OPS. When Gonzalez went down he was hitting .255/.304/.339 and only one homer in 49 games.
It’ll be interesting to see what kind of playing time he gets going forward. The Dodgers, of course, have a comfortable lead in the NL West, so they could afford to allow Gonzalez to play a good bit to see if his bat sharpens up while simultaneously giving Bellinger, who has never played more than 137 games in a season, a bit of a breather. Beyond that, though, the Dodgers ain’t broke, so it’s hard to see why anyone would want to tinker with things.
The Tampa Bay Rays have activated outfielder Kevin Kiermaier from the 60-day disabled list.
Kiermaier, who fractured his hip in early June, is batting leadoff and playing center field in tonight’s game against the Mariners. He was just 3-for-24 on his rehab assignment, but those aren’t usually predictive of anything. He was hitting .258/.329/.408 when he went down. Getting his bat — and, more importantly, his glove — back in the lineup will boost the struggling Rays in their quest for a playoff spot.