Shane Victorino nearing rehab assignment

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Shane Victorino required a stint on the disabled list earlier this month due to a left hamstring strain, but he’s expected to rejoin the Red Sox as soon as he’s eligible next week.

According to Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal, Victorino is slated to begin a minor league rehab assignment on either Sunday or Monday. Barring any setbacks, he should be activated for Wednesday’s game against the Rangers.

Daniel Nava has seen most of the playing time in right field during Victorino’s absence while Jonny Gomes and Mike Carp have shared left field duties. Jackie Bradley Jr. was called up from Triple-A Pawtucket earlier this week as a reserve outfielder, but he should head right back down to the minors once Victorino is ready.

Victorino, 32, is batting .283/.343/.362 with two home runs, 10 RBI, and four stolen bases in 34 games this season. He signed a three-year, $39 million deal with Boston over the winter.

Rays trade Jake Odorizzi to Twins

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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.