The Red Sox are about to add some fresh faces to the mix, with September providing an opportunity for Boston to (slightly) expand its roster.

In past years there would be an influx of talent arriving to Fenway Park on September 1, but Major League Baseball now only allows teams to expand their rosters from 26 to 28 players for the final month of the season. That includes a limit of 14 pitchers allowed in an effort to stop teams (the Tampa Bay Rays) from essentially parading guys in and out of the bullpen throughout the final month of the season.

These fairly new rules put some restrictions on what the Red Sox can do, so we’re going to take a look at the most likely call-up options for Boston in 2023.

Bobby Dalbec, UTI
There is a certain subsect of you that knew this entry was coming when you clicked, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Bobby Dalbec has been absolutely crushing the ball for Triple-A Worcester and has earned his way back into another big league tryout.

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The 28-year-old has slashed .270/.384/.576 for the WooSox in 100 games, belting 31 home runs while playing first base, third base, right field and shortstop. The added versatility to his defensive game has made him a prime candidate to join Boston, giving him the ability to provide relief for the likes of Triston Casas, Justin Turner, Rafael Devers and others.

The biggest thing working in Dalbec’s favor? The Red Sox can only call up one pitcher, so there will need to be a bat added. That could be Wilyer Abreu once he makes his return from the paternity list with Ceddanne Rafaela staying up with Boston, but the only other options would be Dalbec or Enmanuel Valdez.

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A one-month stint in the majors could be huge for both sides, as Dalbec could prove to be a trade piece for Boston this offseason after falling out of its organizational plans.

Chris Murphy, LHP
The Red Sox will certainly take the opportunity to add another pitcher, and the likeliest option is Chris Murphy.

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Boston has called up Murphy twice this season, with the 25-year-old compiling a 4.64 ERA across 42 2/3 innings pitched. He’s been a pretty valuable commodity as one of the Red Sox’s only left-handed options, and with Brennan Bernardino down for the time being, he could receive another shot.

Nick Robertson, RHP
If the Red Sox want to use September as an opportunity to get experience for a valuable organizational piece, Nick Robertson could be the guy.

Robertson was acquired prior to the trade deadline for Kiké Hernández and hasn’t exactly had great results in his limited exposure to the big leagues. The 24-year-old has a 6.91 ERA across 11 total appearances but has essentially been used in blowouts. If things go south for Boston, perhaps September could be used to get the right-hander some valuable experience before he makes his mark as a true big leaguer in 2024 – a la Josh Winckowski last season.

Zack Weiss, RHP
The Red Sox acquired Zack Weiss in late August off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels. He’s a veteran pitcher who has fared well in limited innings for Triple-A Worcester, and if Boston does ever hope to get him up to the show it will come in September.

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Brandon Walter, LHP
Brandon Walter has seemed to be ole reliable for the Red Sox this season, making appearances at the drop of a hat before being shipped back to Worcester. This is another opportunity for Boston to grab some innings out of the 26-year-old.

The Red Sox entered Thursday 6 1/2 games back of the final spot in the American League wild-card race. Boston will open a three-game series with the Kansas City Royals on Friday, with some of these names joining them. First pitch is scheduled for 8:10 p.m. ET, and you can watch it following an hour of pregame coverage on NESN.

Featured image via Jim Rassol/USA TODAY Sports Images