The Red Sox have brought back Brandon Workman on a minor-league deal and have assigned him to Triple-A Worcester, the team announced Thursday.
Workman, who turns 33 in August, spent the first 11 years of his professional career with the Red Sox after being selected in the second round of the 2010 amateur draft out of the University of Texas.
In parts of six seasons with Boston, the right-hander put together his best campaign in 2019 when he emerged as the team’s closer in the process of posting a dazzling 1.88 ERA and 2.46 FIP over 73 relief appearances spanning 71 2/3 innings of work.
Opening the 2020 season with the Sox, Workman — along with fellow reliever Heath Hembree — was dealt to the Phillies in late August in exchange for right-handers Nick Pivetta and Connor Seabold.
With free agency looming, Workman struggled mightily in Philadelphia, as he put up a dismal 6.92 ERA and 1.146 OPS against while blowing three of a possible eight save opportunities over his final 14 outings (13 innings pitched) of the year.
Despite those struggles, Workman did manage to land a one-year, $1 million major-league deal with the Cubs in February and made the club’s Opening Day roster out of spring training.
Workman’s time in Chicago did not go as planned, however, as the Texas native surrendered nine runs (six earned) on 12 hits, seven walks, and 11 strikeouts over 10 appearances out of the Cubs bullpen before being designated for assignment a day later.
Ultimately released by the Cubs a day later, Workman’s second go-around on the free-agent market did not last nearly as long as the first.
The Red Sox had been interested in a reunion with the 6-foot-5 hurler over the winter, and they were eventually able to bring him back — albeit on a minor-league pact.
Per MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo, Workman “will join the WooSox in the near future.”
Cotillo also notes that if the the likes of Josh Taylor and Austin Brice continue to struggle out of the Red Sox bullpen, the Sox could look to Workman given the familiarity there.
(Picture of Brandon Workman: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)