The Red Sox have activated reliever Hirokazu Sawamura from the COVID-19 injured list. Fellow reliever Austin Davis is also back from paternity leave. In corresponding moves, Brad Peacock and Stephen Gonsalves were returned to Triple-A Worcester. Peacock and Gonsalves had each been selected to the roster as COVID replacements, so they can be removed from the active and 40-man rosters without being exposed to waivers. Additionally, right-hander Eduard Bazardo has been reinstated from the 60-day injured list and optioned to Worcester.
Sawamura has been out since August 31 after testing positive for the virus as part of the spread throughout the Sox’s clubhouse. Signed to a two-year deal over the offseason after a nine-year career in Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball, Sawamura has a 3.09 ERA over 46 2/3 innings during his first MLB season. The 33-year-old has shown some worrying control issues, walking 14.2% of opposing hitters, but he’s also punched out an above-average 26.5% of batters faced.
Peacock has made two appearances (including one start) since being acquired from the Indians and called up in the early stages of the outbreak. He has allowed nine runs in 5 1/3 innings. Gonsalves, meanwhile, has worked 4 1/3 innings of two-run ball in relief, his first big league action since he tossed 24 2/3 frames as a rookie with the 2018 Twins.
Manager Alex Cora provided updates on a few more players on the COVID IL (via Chris Cotillo of MassLive and Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe). Lefty Martín Pérez is expected to make it back tomorrow, while closer Matt Barnes will make a couple minor league rehab appearances and is expected to return to the big league club this weekend. The team hopes that ace Chris Sale, who tested positive on September 9, will make it back to start a game against the Orioles this weekend.