Two days ago Felix Doubront talked at length about how he wants to be back in Boston’s rotation following a demotion to the bullpen and, if the Red Sox aren’t willing to use him as a starter again, he wants to be traded.
Then last night Doubront was called upon to relieve Clay Buchholz in the sixth inning and proceeded to retire just two of the 10 batters he faced while allowing six runs to turn the game against the Blue Jays into a laugher.
Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com described Doubront as looking “disinterested, as though he had nothing invested in the appearance,” but manager John Farrell disagreed with that assessment:
It was an ugly night from the mound. I don’t think that he’s disinterested. He’s capable of more. We’ve seen that. Three of the last four outings out of the bullpen have been very good; tonight, that was obviously not the case. On a night when you’re hopeful of stretching him out a little bit, get multiple innings, that wasn’t the case.
Doubront declined to make any comments or answer any questions following the ugly appearance, which may have been his final one in a Red Sox uniform.
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Infielder Brett Lawrie successfully avoided arbitration and signed a one-year contract with the White Sox on Friday, per a team announcement. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman added that the deal was for $3.5 million, significantly lower than the $4.125 million Lawrie was paid by the White Sox in 2016.
The White Sox acquired Lawrie last December in a swap for minor league arms Zack Erwin and J.B. Wendelken. After splitting time at second and third base for the Athletics in 2015, Lawrie slotted in at second base and DH for the White Sox and batted .248/.310/.413 with 12 home runs in 384 PA. While it’s strange to see a healthy, fairly productive player receive a salary reduction in arbitration, Lawrie missed nearly half of the season with a strain in his left hamstring, though he’s projected to return at full health by the start of the 2017 season.
Left-hander Brian Duensing signed a one-year, $2 million contract with the Cubs on Friday, per a report from FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman.
The free agent spent the bulk of his 2016 season with the Orioles after receiving a call-up from Triple-A Norfolk in early June. He underwent elbow surgery several weeks later when a freak bullpen injury revealed cartilage chips and inflammation in his pitching elbow, but recovered to finish the season with a 4.05 ERA and 10 strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings for the club. The Orioles utilized him for a final out during the AL Wild Card game, during which Duensing recorded a five-pitch strikeout in the ninth inning of their 5-2 loss to the Blue Jays.
The 33-year-old is currently expected to bulk up the Cubs’ left-handed relief corps, with fellow left-hander Mike Montgomery slated for the rotation in 2017.