Mike Napoli has been activated from the 15-day disabled list and will bat fifth and play first base this evening when the Red Sox take on the Tigers at Comerica Park in Detroit. Alex Hassan has been optioned back to Triple-A Pawtucket to clear a spot on Boston’s active roster.
Napoli was placed on the disabled list last month with a swollen left ring finger, but the time off also allowed him to rest a sore right hamstring and left calf. He managed to make it back to the Red Sox in the minimum 15 days. The 32-year-old is batting .260/.390/.416 with five home runs and 22 RBI over his first 43 games this season.
Brock Holt has been filling in at first base since Stephen Drew joined the team, but he’s starting in left field tonight with Napoli back in action. He has never played the outfield in pro ball before, but the Red Sox want to keep his bat in the lineup.
Last month, free agent right-hander Bartolo Colon told reporters that he’d be open to taking a minor league deal in 2018, but only if he was guaranteed a return to the Mets’ system. The 44-year-old starter is nearing the end of a 20-year career, and it makes sense that he’d want to have one last hurrah in the city where he had some of his most productive years.
Now, Twins starter Ervin Santana tells Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press, it looks like the Mets might also be open to a reunion. It’s doubtful that Colon has all that much left in the tank, especially following a combined 7-14 record and 6.48 ERA for the Braves and Twins last year, but he’s not necessarily looking to reproduce the 15+ win, sub-4.00 ERA totals of years past.
Instead, Santana says, Colon is seeking the opportunity to win just six more games. He’ll enter the 2018 season five wins shy of the all-time record for a Latin American-born player, and is hoping to claim that title for himself before he enters retirement in 2019. Former Orioles and Expos hurler Dennis Martinez currently holds the record after clinching his 245th win back in 1998. While it took Colon a full season of starts to come up with even seven wins in 2017, he’s only one year removed from a 15-win campaign in 2016. Provided that the Mets are willing to gamble on him again, the milestone may not be that far out of reach.