CHICAGO -- Boston Red Sox reliever Andrew Bailey, who was activated Monday from the disabled list after being out since April 28 with biceps tendinitis, said he "feels as good today as I did day one" and looks forward to returning to closing.
Bailey said he first experienced discomfort April 29, the day after facing the Houston Astros in Fenway Park, and the Red Sox elected to shut him down at that time. He made a rehab appearance for Triple-A Pawtucket on Saturday, giving up a couple of hits, including a home run, while striking out two.
"My fastball was there, curveball, slider, everything's good," he said. "To me, I'm ready to go."
Manager John Farrell plans to slide Bailey right back into the closer's role, but has said he may protect Bailey from back-to-back usage, at least early on. Bailey said he doesn't foresee pitching on consecutive days being an issue.
Bailey returns with a 1-0 record, five saves and a 1.46 ERA in 13 appearances. To make room for him on the roster, the Sox optioned Jose De La Torre to Pawtucket.
For a team that has already endured some bullpen turmoil this season, with closer Joel Hanrahan undergoing Tommy John surgery, Bailey's return will bring some stability back to Boston's bullpen.
"To slide guys back a little bit earlier, it gives us that flexibility with Junichi [Tazawa] a little more, rather than holding him back to close out games," Farrell said Sunday in Minneapolis. "I think just getting guys back one slot earlier in the game certainly makes us stronger and gives us added depth in the pen."
Information from ESPNBoston.com contributor Ben Goessling was used in this report.