BOSTON -- It wouldn’t be the Red Sox without a little roster shuffling.
Second baseman Dustin Pedroia, of course, was activated, after an absence of 44 games, which is one more game than the Sox have left to play. The team was 23-21 while he was out. To make room for him on the roster, the Sox optioned left-handed reliever Dustin Richardson back to Pawtucket, the club informing him before they left Texas on Sunday night.
The surprise Tuesday was to see outfielder Daniel Nava in the Sox clubhouse for the third time this season. Nava was recalled to take the place of outfielder Eric Patterson, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list with the dreaded strain neck. That injury apparently occurred when Patterson slept badly on the flight back from Texas, according to manager Terry Francona.
Francona acknowledged that just as in the case of catcher Kevin Cash (hamstring), the injury wasn’t believed to be serious enough to keep Patterson idle for the full 15 days, but the club didn’t want to be caught shorthanded.
Nava has played in a total of 30 games in two separate roster stints, the second lasting just two days.
Francona said he expects rookie Ryan Kalish will receive the majority of playing time in center field in the immediate future. Jacoby Ellsbury was in Los Angeles having his ribs examined by Dr. Lewis Yocum, while Mike Cameron is progressing to the point, Francona said, that he plans to sit down with the player and map out the next step, presumably a rehab assignment.