Red Sox Notes: Sean O’Sullivan Designated For Assignment; David Ortiz Speaks

by abournenesn

May 15, 2016

BOSTON — Sean O’Sullivan gave the Red Sox about what they expected.

Manager John Farrell announced the Red Sox designated O’Sullivan for assignment after the right-hander’s start in Sunday’s 10-9 win over the Houston Astros at Fenway Park. The team will announce a corresponding move Monday, per Farrell.

Boston called up O’Sullivan from Triple-A Pawtucket on May 6 while sending Henry Owens down in a corresponding move. The 28-year-old made three appearances and two starts for the Red Sox, his latest coming Sunday, in which he gave up six runs (five earned) on five hits over just 4 1/3 innings of work.

It wasn’t a great outing for O’Sullivan, but the Red Sox came back to win, as they did in his previous start against the Oakland Athletics. Given his expected role as a fill-in starter, Farrell will take it.

“He’s going to come in and he’s going to throw strikes,” Farrell said. “… He’s a dependable guy. You kind of know what you’re going to get. Typically, he’s going to throw the ball over the plate, as he did against Oakland. A couple of walks mixed in (Sunday), but still, there’s a pretty clear understanding of what he’s going to provide.”

With pitchers Eduardo Rodriguez and Joe Kelly set to return from injuries soon, O’Sullivan’s services likely won’t be needed in the near future. But the baseball journeyman certainly has enjoyed his two-week stint with the Red Sox, which has seen the club win seven of 10 games and score runs at a remarkable pace.

“I had more fun playing these last two weeks in this clubhouse than anywhere else in the big leagues, I think,” O’Sullivan said. “… I love this place.”

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Let’s hit a few other notes from Red Sox-Astros:

— Xander Bogaerts is beginning to display some power to go along with his team-high .338 batting average. He blasted a three-run home run onto Landsdowne Street in the second inning to give him two homers in the series, and he now has at least one extra-base hit in each of his last four games.

“He’s in a really good place offensively,” Farrell said. “A lot of confidence. There’s a lot of hard contact. Even his outs are well-struck. He’s been right in the middle of many of the outbursts we’ve had.”

— Bogaerts’ bomb gave the Red Sox homers in 16 consecutive games, marking the second-longest such streak in franchise history. The Sox hit homers in 19 straight games in July 1996.

— David Ortiz finally spoke to reporters Sunday after fleeing the clubhouse Saturday to attend his daughter’s birthday party. Apparently his heroic 11th-inning hit came at just the right time.

“Everyone was getting prepared (for the party) while we were playing,? Ortiz said. ?I heard a kid that said, ‘Now that you hit a walk-off, we can start the party on time.’ I was a little late. You don’t want to have your daughter mad at you.”

Judging by this tweet, we’d say he’s in the clear:

— The Red Sox are close to getting two starters back in Rodriguez and Kelly. But Rodriguez didn’t have the sharpest outing Saturday in Pawtucket, and manager John Farrell isn’t ready to call the 23-year-old up to big leagues just yet.

“We?d still like to see, I think, an uptick in performance in general,” Farrell said of Rodriguez before Sunday’s game. “Health-wise, he felt good coming out of it. And while (Saturday) is, I think, a slight improvement over his previous start and certainly over two starts ago, he?s going to make his next start in Pawtucket.”

— Owens started Sunday for Pawtucket and had a pretty rough go of it. He allowed seven runs on eight hits in just five innings of work and surrendered three home runs.

Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images

Thumbnail photo via Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell (53) takes the ball from starting pitcher Sean O'Sullivan (62) during the fifth inning against the Houston Astros at Fenway Park.
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