Connor Seabold was a healthy scratch from his scheduled Saturday start in Triple-A Worcester, but don’t sound the alarms for his return to the majors just yet.
Red Sox manager Alex Cora explained before Saturday’s loss to the New York Yankees that he wanted to give Boston some flexibility over the coming days, but there were no immediate roster moves to announce.
“Obviously we used some guys (relievers) yesterday,” Cora told reporters Saturday, via Christopher Smith of MassLive.com. “Just in case something happens today he can give us length. So just thinking ahead just in case something happens.”
While the Red Sox bullpen spoiled a strong start for Nick Pivetta through a walk-filled eighth inning and a Giancarlo Stanton grand slam, it doesn’t seem like Seabold will factor in to the bullpen in place of more experienced relievers like Tanner Houck or Darwinzon Hernandez, who were the catalysts in that eighth-inning struggle.
The Red Sox used three relievers Friday — Hirokazu Sawamura, Matt Barnes and Martín Pérez — and four Saturday, with Hansel Robles entering immediately after Nick Pivetta and Ryan Brasier closing. It makes sense to want to have options heading into Sunday’s game, which will have major Wild Card implications after Saturday’s loss.
But is there more to it?
Cora revealed postgame Saturday that Josh Taylor was scheduled to undergo an MRI on Sunday to address issues with his back. Perhaps Seabold could factor in as a depth piece if Taylor needs to miss time, especially since Garrett Whitlock is on the injured list with a pectoral issue.
Still, Cora’s explanation probably should be taken at face value — especially now that Barnes and Sawamura have returned to join a group that has fared decently as of late.
Seabold, who lasted three innings in his major league debut, has a 3.28 ERA across nine starts for Worcester.
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