BOSTON -- In desperate need of relief help after starter Clay Buchholz failed to make it through three innings Tuesday night, the Boston Red Sox made multiple roster moves Wednesday to add fresh arms to the team.
Right-hander Anthony Varvaro was designated for assignment, with the Red Sox selecting the contract of right-hander Dalier Hinojosa. In addition, left-hander Tommy Layne was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket, with outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. being optioned back to Pawtucket after a one-day stint with the club.
Hinojosa and Layne are the fourth and fifth pitchers Boston has brought up from Pawtucket since Saturday.
“Obviously we needed the ability to have not only fresh arms but another pitcher that’s capable of multiple innings,” manager John Farrell said. “That’s where Hinojosa comes into the mix.”
The Red Sox bullpen has been overworked in the early going this season, in large part due to their starters’ inability to go deep into games. Boston’s rotation ranks toward the bottom of the league with 112 innings pitched as a staff. Meanwhile, their relievers lead the league with 80-2/3 innings as a group.
Having been often used in mop-up situations this season, such as when he threw 1-1/3 innings Tuesday night, Farrell admitted that perhaps Varvaro had been miscast in his time with the team. He threw 11 innings in nine games, posting a 4.09 ERA.
Varvaro had been acquired in the offseason after he was designated for assignment by the Atlanta Braves.
“It was mixed,” Farrell said of Varvaro’s time with the team. “We’re trying to get a number of guys on track. To single any one pitcher out is probably not the right approach given the work that we’ve had with the group of guys here.
“Anthony’s strength has been against left-handed hitting in the past. The fact that we’ve got three left-handers in the bullpen, the fit was to go the direction we are.”
Another arm the Red Sox will hope to get on track is that of Edward Mujica. After starting the season as the team’s closer with Koji Uehara on the disabled list, Mujica has fallen greatly out of favor this season. The right-hander endured a disastrous 1-1/3 innings of work Tuesday night, allowing three runs to score on three hits and committing two balks. His ERA sits at 6.30 in 10 innings of work.
“There’s a trickle-down effect from inconsistent outings as far as length from a starter,” Farrell said. “So many times you’re going to the reliever that’s most rested rather than the matchup. Unfortunately that’s been the case through different turns through the rotation.”
In four games with Pawtucket this season, Hinojosa has thrown 7-1/3 innings, striking out nine and posting a 3.68 ERA. The Red Sox signed Hinojosa out of Cuba to a minor-league contract with a $4 million bonus in 2013.
As for Layne, the left-hander had yet to be scored upon in four outings with Pawtucket this season. It will be his second stint with Boston, as he posted a 5.79 ERA in 4-2/3 innings pitched earlier this year.