Red Sox manager John Farrell revealed before Sunday’s game against the Oakland Athletics at Fenway Park that Kelly will remain in Boston’s rotation. Steven Wright, meanwhile, will shift to the bullpen.
Kelly’s next start is scheduled for Friday against the Toronto Blue Jays at Fenway. Wright, who last started Thursday against the Minnesota Twins, will join the bullpen immediately.
The Red Sox have been using a six-man rotation of late, but it never was seen as a long-term solution. According to Farrell, the club didn’t consider sticking with a six-man unit despite the recent success of Boston’s starters.
Kelly secured his spot in the rotation with a solid, six-inning effort in Saturday’s win over the A’s. Wright pitched well in four starts after joining the rotation with Justin Masterson on the disabled list, but Farrell said Sunday that Kelly has the ability to be a “dominant starter” despite some hiccups this season.
One could make a legitimate argument for either Kelly or Wright to stay put. And it’s an intriguing debate given the pitchers’ contrasting styles. But ultimately, Kelly has the higher ceiling.
The Red Sox will roll with Kelly in the hopes that the right-hander will establish more consistency.
Thumbnail photo via Nick Turchiaro/USA TODAY Sports Images
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