Red Sox offseason: Abraham Almonte, Jaylin Davis elect free agency

Two veterans who provided the Red Sox with outfield depth this season have recently opted for free agency.

Abraham Almonte, who was designated for assignment on Tuesday, cleared waivers on Saturday and was outrighted off Boston’s major-league roster. Rather than accept an assignment to Triple-A Worcester, the 33-year-old elected to become a free agent.

Fellow outfielder Jaylin Davis was designated for assignment in September and spent the rest of the 2022 campaign with the WooSox after clearing waivers. The 28-year-old became a minor-league free agent last Thursday.

Almonte was acquired from the Brewers in exchange for cash considerations in late July. The switch-hitter appeared in 32 games for Worcester before being selected to the major-league roster on September 7. He then proceeded to bat .257/.297/.400 with one home run, two RBIs, seven runs scored, one stolen base, one walk, and 12 strikeouts in 15 games (37 plate appearances) with Boston while seeing playing time at all three outfield positions.

Now a veteran of 10 big-league seasons, Almonte was projected by MLB Trade Rumors to earn $900,000 in arbitration next year. The native Dominican is now free to sign with whichever team he chooses. Considering that he posted a .951 OPS in 80 Triple-A contests last season, Almonte could be of interest to clubs looking to add experienced outfielders on minor-league deals this winter.

Davis, meanwhile, was originally claimed off waivers from the Giants in late April. He appeared in two games for the Red Sox right out of the gate before being optioned to Worcester when rosters shrunk from 28 to 26 players in size. Less than two weeks later, he was designated for assignment.

After going unclaimed, Davis spent the next two months with the WooSox. The North Carolina native had his contract selected from Worcester on July 23 and remained with the big-league club before being optioned again on August 15.

Exactly four weeks later, the Red Sox claimed infielder Yu Chang off waivers from the Rays. They needed to create a spot on the 40-man roster for Chang, and they did so by designating Davis, who yet again cleared waivers.

All told, Davis went 8-for-24 (.333) with one double, two RBIs, four runs scored, three walks, and 11 strikeouts in 12 games with the Sox this season. Like Almonte, he played all three outfield positions during his two stints in Boston. With the WooSox, the right-handed hitter slashed .203/.312/.335 with 12 doubles, three triples, seven homers, 24 runs driven in, 43 runs scored, one stolen base, 43 walks, and 107 strikeouts across 88 games spanning 346 trips to the plate.

Almonte and Davis will soon be joined on the open market by other minor-leaguers who spent the 2022 season in the Red Sox organization. Johan Mieses, Christin Stewart, and Izzy Wilson are among the outfielders who are expected to become free agents.

With that being said, it should be interesting to see how the Sox go about addressing their upper-minors outfield depth in the coming weeks and months.

(Picture of Abraham Almonte: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images0

Red Sox roster moves: Yu Chang activated, Jeurys Familia designated for assignment, Jaylin Davis outrighted

The Red Sox made a series of roster moves before wrapping up a quick two-game series against the Yankees at Fenway Park on Wednesday night.

Infielder Yu Chang, who was claimed off waivers from the Rays on Monday, was added to the active roster. To make room on the 28-man roster for Chang, veteran reliever Jeurys Familia was officially designated for assignment.

Additionally, outfielder Jaylin Davis, who was designated for assignment on Monday, cleared waivers and has been outrighted to Triple-A Worcester, the club announced.

Chang, 27, will be playing for his fourth team this season. The Taiwan native began the year with the Guardians before being traded to the Pirates for cash considerations in late May. He was then designated for assignment by Pittsburgh and claimed by Tampa Bay in early July.

Between the three clubs, Chang has batted .236/.278/.349 with four doubles, four home runs, 14 RBIs, 16 runs scored, 11 walks, and 52 strikeouts over 58 games (164 plate appearances). The right-handed hitter slashed a more respectable .260/.305/.385 with three homers and 12 RBIs in 36 games (105 plate appearances with the Rays.

Chang originally signed with the Guardians for $500,000 as an international free agent coming out of Taitung in June 2013. The 6-foot-1, 180-pounder was once regarded as one of the top prospects in Cleveland’s farm system but he has not been able to find his footing at the big-league level.

That being said, the Red Sox still took a chance on Chang and his versatility likely played a role in that since he has experience at all four infield positions. Since he is out of minor-league options, though, Boston will need to keep Chang on its active roster if it does not intend on exposing him to waivers.

Chang, who will wear the No. 12 with the Sox, is not in Wednesday’s starting lineup, but he should be available off the bench if needed.

Familia, on the other hand, saw his Red Sox tenure come to an end on Tuesday night after a disastrous 10th inning against the Yankees. The right-hander loaded the bases with two outs before giving up a game-winning three-run double to Gleyber Torres that lifted New York to a 7-6 victory.

After signing a one-year, $6 million deal with the Phillies in March, Familia struggled to a 6.09 ERA in 38 appearances before being cut loose by Philadelphia in early August. The former All-Star closer then inked a minors pact with the Red Sox before having his contract selected on Aug. 9.

Since joining Boston’s bullpen, Familia has posted a 6.10 ERA and 5.15 FIP to go along with eight strikeouts to seven walks over 10 relief outings spanning 10 1/3 innings of work. Tuesday’s performance was the last straw for the 32-year-old hurler, who made the announcement himself that he had been designated for assignment.

Given that he will likely clear waivers in the coming days, Familia said Tuesday night that he plans on returning home to the Dominican Republic to rest up and then prepare for whatever opportunities may present themselves next year.

UPDATE: Familia cleared waivers on Friday and rejected an outright assignment in favor of free agency, the Red Sox announced.

By removing Familia and adding Chang, the Red Sox will carry 15 position players and 13 pitchers on their active roster for the time being. They also have a vacancy on their 40-man roster.

Davis, meanwhile, was designated for assignment so that the Red Sox could add Chang to their 40-man roster on Monday. The 28-year-old was initially claimed off waivers from the Giants in late April but has since been removed from Boston’s 40-man roster on two separate occasions.

Each time, Davis cleared waivers and was subsequently outrighted to Worcester, where he is batting .198/.315/.318 with five home runs and 17 RBIs in 76 games with the WooSox. In two stints with Boston, the right-handed hitter has gone 8-for-24 (.333) with one double, two RBIs, three runs scored, three walks, and 11 strikeouts over 12 games. 

(Picture of Yu Chang: Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

Red Sox claim Yu Chang off waivers from Rays, designate Jaylin Davis for assignment

The Red Sox have claimed infielder Yu Chang off waivers from the Rays. In a corresponding move, outfielder Jaylin Davis was designated for assignment, the club announced earlier Monday afternoon.

Chang, 27, was designated for assignment by the Rays on Friday and has also played for the Guardians and Pirates this season. Across 58 games between the three clubs, the right-handed hitter has batted .216/.280/.324 with four doubles, four home runs, 14 RBIs, 16 runs scored, 11 walks, and 52 strikeouts over 164 total plate appearances. That includes a .260/.305/.385 slash line in which he hit three home runs in 36 games (105 plate appearances) with Tampa Bay.

Listed at 6-foot-1 and 180 pounds, Chang originally signed with Cleveland for $500,000 as a highly-touted international free-agent coming out of Taiwan in June 2013. He was once regarded by Baseball America as one of the top prospects in the Guardians farm system, but has come up short in displaying his tools on a consistent basis at the big-league level.

Defensively, Chang comes with experience at all four infield positions, so he should provide Boston with depth across the diamond. With the Rays, Chang saw the majority of his playing time (26 of 36 appearances) come at second base. That could be noteworthy when considering Trevor Story left Sunday’s 1-0 win over the Orioles in the seventh inning due to left heel pain.

Chang, who does not turn 28 until next August, is out of minor-league options, so he will have to stick with the Red Sox or will otherwise need to be exposed to waivers again if the club intends to remove him from the major-league roster. On that note, the Taitung native is technically under team control through the end of the 2025 campaign.

As for Davis, the Red Sox initially claimed the 28-year-old waivers from the Giants in late April but has since been designated for assignment on two separate occasions.

In two stints with Boston this season, Davis has gone 8-for-24 (.333) with one double, two RBIs, three runs scored, three walks, and 11 strikeouts over 12 games. With Triple-A Worcester, the right-handed hitter has slashed .198/.315/.318 with five home runs and 17 RBIs in 76 games.

The Red Sox will have the next seven days to place Davis on outright waivers or release waivers. Since he has previously been outrighted this season, Davis would have the ability to reject an outright assignment in favor of free agency in the event he clears waivers once again.

(Picture of Yu Chang: Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)

Red Sox option Jaylin Davis to Triple-A Worcester

The Red Sox optioned outfielder Jaylin Davis to Triple-A Worcester following Sunday night’s 3-0 win over the Yankees, the club announced earlier Monday afternoon.

Davis, 28, has batted .333/.407/.375 with one double, two RBIs, four runs scored, three walks, and 11 strikeouts over 12 games (27 plate appearances) this season while seeing playing time at all three outfield positions.

Boston originally claimed Davis off waivers from the San Francisco Giants in late April. It designated him for assignment on May 14, but the Appalachian State product cleared waivers and was subsequently outrighted to Worcester. He had his contract selected on July 23 and has been on the the club’s 40-man roster since then.

With the WooSox this year, the right-handed hitting Davis has slashed .236/.335/.462 to go along with nine doubles, two triples, five homers, 15 runs driven in, 28 runs scored, one stolen base, 26 walks, and 68 strikeouts across 56 games spanning 221 trips to the plate.

By optioning Davis, the Red Sox have created an opening on their 26-man roster. That vacancy will likely be filled by fellow outfielder Rob Refsnyder, who is expected to be activated from the 10-day injured list in Pittsburgh on Tuesday after missing the last two-plus weeks with a right knee sprain.

The same can be said for Enrique Hernandez, who has been sidelined with a right hip flexor strain since early June. The only difference between Refsnyder and Hernandez is that the latter was transferred to the 60-day injured list in late July, meaning he does not currently occupy a spot on Boston’s 40-man roster.

So the Red Sox will need to clear a spot on both their 26- and 40-man roster for Hernandez before opening a three-game series against the Pirates at PNC Park on Tuesday. They could accomplish this by designating someone like Yolmer Sanchez for assignment, though that remains to be seen.

(Picture of Jaylin Davis: Winslow Townson/Getty Images)

Red Sox place Rafael Devers on 10-day injured list with right hamstring inflammation, call up Jaylin Davis from Triple-A Worcester; Kiké Hernández transferred to 60-day injured list

The Red Sox have placed third baseman Rafael Devers on the 10-day injured list with right hamstring inflammation. In a pair of corresponding moves, outfielder Jaylin Davis had his contract selected from Triple-A Worcester while utility man Enrique Hernandez was transferred from the 10- to the 60-day injured list, the club announced prior to Saturday’s game against the Blue Jays at Fenway Park.

Devers sustained his hamstring injury in Friday night’s 28-5 loss to Toronto. It may have happened during his final at-bat when he lined out to left field for the second out of the fifth inning, but he also looked uncomfortable while running out a double off Blue Jays starter Kevin Gausman in the bottom of the first.

“He says he felt it in the swing (final at-bat). If you see him running the bases on the first one, the double, he didn’t look too good rounding first,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora told reporters (including MassLive.com’s Christopher Smith) on Saturday. “I guess he kept grinding. There was a swing and he grabbed it. I was like, ‘Are you OK?’ He was like, ‘Nah.’”

Devers, who started last Tuesday’s All-Star Game in Los Angeles, missed a handful of games earlier this month because of lower back pain and a sore right hamstring. The 25-year-old slugger currently leads the Red Sox in several offensive categories, including hits (113), home runs (22), runs scored (62), batting average (.324), slugging percentage (.602), and OPS (.981).

It is unclear how much time Devers will miss because of his inflamed right hamstring. He will be eligible to come off the injured list when the Red Sox are in Houston on August 2. In the meantime, Davis will take his place on the major-league roster.

Davis, 28, appeared in two games for Boston in late April/early May, going 2-for-4 with two singles and two strikeouts. The right-handed hitter was designated for assignment on May 14 but cleared waivers and was outrighted to Worcester. Since then, he has batted .242/.358/.385 (105 wRC+) with four home runs, 12 RBIs, and 25 runs scored in his last 47 games (190 plate appearances) with the WooSox.

The Red Sox were able to open a spot on their 40-man roster by transferring Hernandez to the 60-day injured list. The versatile 30-year-old has been sidelined with a right hip flexor strain since June 8 and is now not eligible to return to action until August 7.

Boston’s 40-man roster is now at full capacity. Another spot will need to be created once rookie right-hander Josh Winckowski is ready to be activated from the COVID-19 related injured list.

(Picture of Rafael Devers: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox outright Jaylin Davis to Triple-A Worcester after outfielder clears waivers

The Red Sox have outrighted Jaylin Davis to Triple-A Worcester after the outfielder cleared waivers, MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo reported earlier Wednesday afternoon.

Davis, 27, was claimed off waivers from the Giants late last month before making his Red Sox debut on April 30. Appearing in two games with Boston while the team was in Baltimore, the right-handed hitter went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles and two strikeouts.

On May 2, the Sox optioned Davis — as well as right-hander Phillips Valdez — to Worcester at the same time big-league rosters shrunk from 28 to 26 players.

In nine games with the WooSox, Davis batted .200/.194/.367 with two doubles, one home run, three RBIs, three runs scored, zero walks, and 11 strikeouts across 31 plate appearances. He was designated for assignment this past Saturday so that the Red Sox could create a spot on their 40-man roster for righty John Schreiber.

Now that he has cleared waivers, Davis will remain in the Red Sox organization, albeit in a different capacity. That said, the North Carolina native should provide Boston with experienced outfield depth in Worcester and it would not be all that surprising if he made his way back to the majors at some point later this season.

(Picture of Jaylin Davis: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Red Sox activate Rich Hill from COVID-19 related injured list, option Kutter Crawford to Triple-A Worcester and designate Jaylin Davis for assignment

Before going for a series win over the Rangers at Globe Field on Saturday night, the Red Sox made a series of roster moves.

First off, left-hander Rich Hill was reinstated from the COVID-19 related injured list. In order to make room for Hill on the major-league roster, right-hander Kutter Crawford was optioned to Triple-A Worcester. Additionally, outfielder Jaylin Davis was designated for assignment, the club announced.

Hill had been on the COVID IL since May 6 after testing positive for the virus. The 42-year-old southpaw rejoined the Red Sox in Arlington on Friday and is slated to make his sixth start of the season against the Rangers on Saturday.

Through his first five outings of the year, Hill has posted a 2.86 ERA and 3.86 FIP to go along with 17 strikeouts to seven walks over 22 innings pitched. Saturday will mark his second career start at the relatively new Globe Life Field.

Crawford, on the other hand, has pitched just two times in the last nine days and was a clear candidate to get sent down. A surprise addition to Boston’s Opening Day roster last month, the 26-year-old showed impressive stuff out of the bullpen but also put up an 8.44 ERA and 5.20 FIP with 14 strikeouts and eight walks across eight relief appearances spanning 10 2/3 innings of work.

Despite demoting him on Saturday, the Red Sox will likely call upon Crawford once again at some point later this season. In the meantime, the hard-throwing righty will get the chance to pitch on a more regular basis in Worcester.

As for Davis, Boston originally claimed the 27-year-old off waivers from the Giants on April 28 and optioned him to Worcester. The following day, though, Davis was called up from Triple-A and later made his Red Sox debut on April 30 against the Orioles in Baltimore. The right-handed hitter went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles and two strikeouts before getting sent back down on May 2.

In nine games with the WooSox, Davis slashed .200/.194/.367 with one home run and three RBIs over 31 trips to the plate while seeing playing time at both corner outfield positions. The Red Sox now have the next seven days to either trade, release or waive Davis, who has one minor-league option remaining.

By designating Davis for assignment, the Sox were able to clear a spot on their 40-man roster for right-handed reliever John Schreiber, who was already on the big-league roster but only as a COVID-related substitute.

Schreiber has impressed out of the Boston bullpen while earning the trust of manager Alex Cora. The 28-year-old has yet to allow an earned run over six relief appearances (7 innings pitched) so far this season.

Following Saturday’s flurry of moves, the Red Sox’ 40-man roster is now full.

(Picture of Rich Hill: Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)

Red Sox option Jaylin Davis and Phillips Valdez to Triple-A Worcester

Following Sunday afternoon’s loss to the Orioles, the Red Sox optioned outfielder Jaylin Davis and right-hander Phillips Valdez to Triple-A Worcester, the team announced.

The decision to option both Davis and Valdez comes one day before all Major League Baseball teams are required to trim their active rosters from 28 to 26 players.

As a result of the lockout and the compressed spring training that followed, MLB allowed its clubs to carry 28 players on their rosters from the start of the season up until May 2. Teams must remove two players from their active roster in order to get down to 26 by Monday. They are now permitted to carry up to 14 pitchers through May 30.

By sending Davis and Valdez to Worcester, Boston now has 14 pitchers and 12 position players on its major-league roster. According to MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo, the Sox are expected to keep it that way for the time being.

Davis, 27, was claimed off waivers from the Giants on Thursday and joined the team in Baltimore the following day. He was used as a pinch-runner in his Red Sox debut and went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles in his first start for the club on Sunday.

Since he has one minor-league option remaining, Davis can provide the Red Sox with experienced outfield depth from Worcester throughout the season. Before being claimed, the right-handed hitter appeared in 10 games for the Giants’ Triple-A affiliate in Sacramento and batted .295/.340/.500 with two home runs and seven RBIs over 47 plate appearances. He turns 28 in July.

Valdez, on the other hand, entered Sunday with a 3.24 ERA through his first seven relief appearances (8 1/3 innings pitched) of the season. On Sunday, however, the 30-year-old righty got rocked for four earned runs on four hits, two walks, and one hit batsman in two innings of work against the Orioles. That performance raised his ERA on the season up to 6.10.

As was the case last season, Valdez will join the WooSox’ bullpen for now but should contribute at the big-league level for Boston once more later in the year.

(Picture of Jaylin Davis: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Red Sox activate Kutter Crawford and Tanner Houck from restricted list, add Franchy Cordero and Jaylin Davis from Triple-A Worcester in slew of roster moves

Before opening up a three-game weekend series against the Orioles at Camden Yards on Friday night, the Red Sox made a series of roster moves.

First off, right-handers Kutter Crawford and Tanner Houck were both activated from the restricted list. Secondly, outfielder Jaylin Davis was recalled from Triple-A Worcester and fellow outfielder Franchy Cordero had his contract selected from Worcester.

In order to make room for these four on the major-league roster, right-handers Tyler Danish and John Schreiber were sent down to Triple-A Worcester while infielder Travis Shaw was designated for assignment, the club announced.

Crawford and Houck return from the restricted list after both were placed on it this past Monday. Neither pitcher was eligible to pitch in the Sox’ last series against the Blue Jays in Toronto due to their unvaccinated status. Houck will piggyback Rich Hill, who will be making his fourth start of the season for Boston on Friday.

Davis, who was claimed off waivers from the Giants and immediately optioned to Worcester on Thursday, will join the Red Sox for his first big-league stint of 2022. The right-handed hitting 27-year-old began the season with the Giants’ Triple-A affiliate in Sacramento and batted .295/.340/.500 with two home runs and seven RBIs over 10 games spanning 47 plate appearances. He will wear the No. 43 with his new team.

Joining Davis from Worcester is Cordero, who appeared in 48 games with the Sox last season but was designated for assignment in October. After remaining in the organization through the winter, the 27-year-old opened the 2022 season with the WooSox and has since slashed .296/.378/.535 with eight doubles, three home runs, 24 RBIs, 13 runs scored, one stolen base, 10 walks, and 23 strikeouts over 19 games (82 plate appearances) at the Triple-A level. He will start at first base and bat sixth for Boston in Friday’s series opener against Baltimore.

Danish and Schreiber were both added from Worcester when Crawford and Houck were placed on the restricted list earlier this week. Danish has made four appearances with the Red Sox so far this season and has posted a 3.86 ERA with six strikeouts to two walks over 4 2/3 total innings of work. Schreiber, on the other hand, pitched on both Wednesday and Thursday. The 28-year-old righty retired seven of the eight batters he faced across 2 1/3 scoreless frames.

Refsnyder, meanwhile, was first called up from Worcester after catcher Christian Vazquez and infielder Jonathan Arauz were placed on the COVID-19 related injured list on April 19. The 31-year-old made his Red Sox debut four days later and went 2-for-5 (.400) with two doubles, one RBI, and one walk in the three games he appeared in.

Since they were COVID substitutes, both Refsnyder and Schreiber were taken off the Sox’ 40-man roster and returned to the WooSox without having to be exposed to waivers.

As for Shaw, the veteran infielder effectively lost his spot on the major-league roster to Cordero after an 0-for-19 start to the plate this season. The Red Sox now have the next seven days to either trade, release, or waive Shaw.

(Picture of Franchy Cordero: Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

Red Sox claim Jaylin Davis off waivers from Giants, option outfielder to Triple-A Worcester

The Red Sox have claimed outfielder Jaylin Davis off waivers from the San Francisco Giants, the club announced earlier Thursday afternoon. A corresponding move was not needed since Boston had an opening on their 40-man roster.

Davis, 27, was designated for assignment by San Francisco last week after the Giants acquired right-hander Cory Abbott from the Cubs. Boston has optioned him to Triple-A Worcester.

A former 24th-round draft choice of the Twins out of Appalachian State University in 2015, Davis was dealt to the Giants in the same trade that sent Sam Dyson to Minnesota at the 2019 trade deadline. The North Carolina native made his major-league debut for San Francisco that September and appeared in 26 big-league contests with the club from 2019 to 2021.

In that 26-game span, the right-handed hitting Davis has batted .159/.221/.270 with one double, two home runs, four RBIs, five runs scored, one stolen base, three walks, and 18 strikeouts over 68 total trips to the plate. He has also seen playing time at both corner outfield positions with 139 1/3 of his 147 1/3 career defensive innings coming in right.

After failing to make the Giants’ Opening Day roster out of spring training this year, Davis was optioned to Triple-A Sacramento, where he hit .295/.340/.500 (109 wRC+) to go along with three doubles, two homers, seven RBIs, 10 runs scored, three stolen bases, three walks, and 14 strikeouts over 10 games (47 plate appearances) with the River Cats.

Listed at 5-foot-11 and 205 pounds, Davis, who turns 28 in July, should provide the Red Sox with some intriguing outfield depth in Worcester given the fact he has plus speed and power. It also helps that he has one minor-league option year remaining.

While Boston did not need to make a corresponding move to accommodate the addition of Davis on Thursday, they will need to make room on their 40-man roster on Friday when Tanner Houck and Kutter Crawford are activated from the restricted list in Baltimore.

(Picture of Jaylin Davis: Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)