Red Sox activate Ryan Hanigan, demote Christian Vazquez

BOSTON -- On the heels of his team's 12-5 win over the Texas Rangers on Monday, Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell announced that catcher Ryan Hanigan (neck) will be activated from the disabled list on Tuesday and Christian Vazquez will be optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket.

In addition, Farrell said right-hander Sean O'Sullivan, who allowed two runs in five innings Sunday in a spot start against the Los Angeles Angels, will start against the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday, and Clay Buchholz will pitch out of the bullpen until the All-Star break.

By optioning Vazquez, the Red Sox keep hot-hitting Sandy Leon on the team. The 27-year-old is sporting a .500 batting average in 40 at-bats this season after going 4-for-5 with three doubles Monday.

"I just feel good right now," Leon said. "Trying not to do too much, keep it simple."

Leon's nine extra-base hits are three more than he had in 209 major league at-bats prior to this year.

"He's been unbelievable," teammate Brock Holt said. "We laugh every time he gets a hit now. We should be laughing every time he gets out because he hasn't got out very much. He's been great for us, and he's been a huge part of what we've been doing."

Leon is also out of options, which played into the team's decision to keep him over Vazquez.

"At that position, you're always a foul tip away from needing another guy," Farrell said. "From the performance of Sandy in combination with the organizational depth, we felt like this was the move we needed to make.

"We weren't in a position to continue to prolong the rehab for Ryan, and we certainly weren't going to cut ties with anyone."

Vazquez, known primarily for his defense, has hit .226 with a home run and 12 RBIs in 2016.

As for Buchholz, this is the second time this season that he has been relegated to pitching out of the bullpen. In three starts since his first stint as a reliever, the 31-year-old has allowed 14 runs (10 earned) on 18 hits in 14 2/3 innings, which brought his ERA on the season to 5.91.