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Farrell: LHP Morales likely to return soon

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Left-handed pitcher Franklin Morales, who made his fifth rehab appearance for Pawtucket Wednesday night, is on deck to be called up, said Red Sox manager John Farrell, implying that his promotion could come sometime this weekend.

Morales' return would give the Red Sox a third lefty again in their bullpen, the number Farrell had at his disposal until Matt Thornton strained an oblique muscle Sunday and went on the disabled list. With rookie Drake Britton pitching as well as he has and Craig Breslow considered an integral part of the bullpen mix, a healthy Morales could give the Sox a potential piece to move during the August waiver period.

It has been a difficult season for Morales, who was shut down early in spring training with a bulging disc in his back, returned in late May, then strained his left pectoral muscle, which put him back on the DL on June 25 (retroactive to June 23). He has missed 92 games while making just six appearances (one start), in which he has posted a 2-0 record with a 7.30 ERA. In five rehab appearances, four with Pawtucket, he has allowed one run in 5 1/3 innings, striking out 6.

--Right-handed reliever Alex Wilson has had his rehab stint placed on hold after experiencing discomfort in his sprained right thumb. Farrell said Wilson will be re-examined. He had made four appearances, the last on Monday.

--Knuckleballer Steven Wright was optioned back to Pawtucket with Daniel Nava back from paternity leave.

--The Sox came into Thursday's game with 25 home runs since the All-Star break, second in the majors to Toronto (26).