Bard placed on DL with abdominal strain

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- The downward spiral in which Daniel Bard is trapped professionally has taken another turn for the worse. Although these days, it’s hard to separate the merely bad from the godawful.

Red Sox manager John Farrell acknowledged Tuesday that Bard has been placed on the disabled list by the Double A Portland Sea Dogs with an abdominal strain. The injury occurred, Farrell said, after Bard was shut down from pitching in games.

Bard last appeared in a game on May 15. His work since has been limited exclusively to side sessions, as he and the Sox seek a solution to the command issues that have sidetracked his career. Before being shut down, Bard was 0-1 with a 6.39 ERA in 13 appearances for Portland. He also made a cameo appearance for the Red Sox, pitching in two games, coming out of the second after walking the only two batters he faced.

“I know he’s been dealing with a little bit of an abdominal strain,’’ Farrell said, “but that was subsequent to his shutdown. It’s been about five or six weeks of inactivity because of the designed work that’s being done. I’m sure part of it is getting that spot on the roster freed up.’’