Sox aim for Monday return for Bailey

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Red Sox reliever Andrew Bailey, who had just been named the team's closer over Joel Hanrahan when he went on the disabled list with a strained right biceps, is on track to be activated Monday in Chicago, manager John Farrell said Thursday.

With Hanrahan facing season-ending surgery for a torn flexor muscle in his right elbow, Bailey will slide back into the closer's role on Monday, Farrell said. Bailey threw a simulated game here Thursday and is scheduled to make a rehab assignment Saturday for Pawtucket. Assuming that goes well, he'll rejoin the team after being on the disabled list since May 6, retroactive to April 29.

Bailey last pitched on April 28, when he pitched a scoreless ninth inning, allowing one hit, against the Houston Astros. Before being hurt, Bailey had run off five saves in five chances, striking out 11 in six innings and holding opponents to a .100 batting average (2-for-20).

"I watched him out here today," Farrell said. "He threw the ball very well, not only with power with his fastball but action with his secondary stuff."

Junichi Tazawa has served as closer in the absence of both Hanrahan and Bailey. Tazawa has not had any save opportunities, but he entered the ninth inning of a tie game against Toronto last Saturday and gave up what proved to be a game-winning home run by Adam Lind. He has not pitched since.