The Red Sox have officially called up top pitching prospect Brayan Bello from Triple-A Worcester. In order to make room for Bello on the 26-man roster, veteran reliever Hansel Robles was designated for assignment, the club announced Wednesday.
Bello will make his major-league debut in Wednesday night’s series finale against the Rays at Fenway Park. He will become the second Red Sox pitching prospect to make his first career start this season, joining fellow right-hander Josh Winckowski in doing so.
Regarded by Baseball America as the No. 1 pitching prospect in Boston’s farm system and the No. 44 prospect in all of baseball, Bello has posted a 2.33 ERA and 2.88 FIP to go along with 114 strikeouts to 33 walks over 15 appearances (14 starts) and 85 innings between Double-A Portland and Worcester this season.
The 23-year-old out of the Dominican Republic works with a four- and two-seam fastball, a devastating changeup, and a slider. He will wear the No. 66 and become the first Red Sox player to do so since Brandon Brennan last year.
To put it simply, there is plenty of hype surrounding Bello’s debut. That being said, it seems likely that his first stint in the majors will be a short one, as he could be optioned back down to the WooSox immediately following Wednesday’s contest with the Rays.
As for Robles, his designation was first reported by the Boston Sports Journal’s Sean McAdam on Tuesday night. The 31-year-old righty lost his spot on Boston’s roster after pitching to a 5.84 ERA (5.75 FIP) with 21 strikeouts to 14 walks across 26 appearances (24 2/3 innings) in his first full season with the club.
The Sox now have the next seven days to either trade, release, or waive Robles, who has the right to refuse an outright assignment to the minor-leagues in favor of free agency if he clears waivers. In that scenario, the Red Sox would then be on the hook for the rest of Robles’ 2022 salary.
By designating Robles for assignment, not only did the Red Sox open a spot on their 26-man roster for Bello, but they also cleared a spot on their 40-man roster — which now sits at 39 players — as well.
That open spot will eventually be needed when Chris Sale is activated from the 60-day injured list, though Boston could do something else with it in the meantime.
(Picture of Brayan Bello: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)