Michael Feliz elects free agency after being outrighted off Red Sox’ 40-man roster

Four days after being designated for assignment by the Red Sox, reliever Michael Feliz has cleared waivers and has elected free agency in lieu of accepting an outright assignment to Triple-A Worcester.

Feliz made one appearance for Boston after having his contract selected from Worcester last week. Taking the place of the injured Tyler Danish on the major-league roster, the right-hander allowed two runs (one earned) on one hit, two walks, and four strikeouts over 3 1/3 innings of relief against the Yankees on July 8.

The following day, Feliz — who is out of minor-league options — lost his spot on the Red Sox’ 40-man roster when fellow reliever Kaleb Ort was called up from the WooSox.

Since he has accrued more than five years of big-league service time, Feliz had the ability to reject an assignment to the minor-leagues in favor of free agency should he clear waivers, which is exactly what happened on Wednesday.

Now, Feliz is free to sign elsewhere. The 29-year-old hurler from the Dominican Republic could appeal to other clubs given the fact he posted a 3.28 ERA and 2.85 FIP with 28 strikeouts to nine walks across 18 appearances (three starts) and 24 2/3 innings for the WooSox this season.

(Picture of Michael Feliz: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox select Kaleb Ort from Triple-A Worcester, designate Michael Feliz for assignment

The Red Sox have selected the contract of right-handed reliever Kaleb Ort from Triple-A Worcester. In a corresponding move, fellow right-hander Michael Feliz has been designated for assignment, according to MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo.

Ort is expected to be activated ahead of Saturday’s game against the Yankees at Fenway Park. The 30-year-old made his major-league debut for Boston last September, appearing in one game as a COVID-related substitute while the club was in Seattle.

Originally acquired from the Yankees in the minor-league phase of the 2020 Rule 5 Draft, Ort has spent the vast majority of the last two seasons with the WooSox. This year alone, the Michigan-born righty has posted a 3.12 ERA and 2.62 FIP with 47 strikeouts to 16 walks over 33 relief appearances spanning 34 2/3 innings of work.

Undrafted out of Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Ort initially signed with the Diamondbacks out of independent ball in 2016 but was released the following spring. He then latched on with the Yankees in May 2017 and spent the next three-plus years in the organization before getting scooped up by the Red Sox in December 2020.

Listed at 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, Ort may not be much of a prospect at this point, but he has still proven to be an effective weapon out of Worcester’s bullpen the last two seasons thanks to a two-pitch mix that consists of a high-90s fastball and whiff-inducing slider.

Feliz, meanwhile, was added to Boston’s 40-man roster on Thursday and made his 2022 debut in Friday’s 12-5 loss to the Yankees. The 29-year-old relieved starter Connor Seabold and allowed two runs (one earned) on one hit, two walks, and four strikeouts over 3 1/3 innings. Thirty-four of the 57 pitches he threw went for strikes.

The Sox will now have the next seven days to either trade, release, or waive Feliz, who has accrued enough service time to reject an outright assignment to the minor-leagues in favor of free agency.

(Picture of Kaleb Ort: Abbie Parr/Getty Images)

Red Sox place Tyler Danish on 15-day injured list, select Michael Feliz from Triple-A Worcester

The Red Sox have placed right-handed reliever Tyler Danish on the 15-day injured list due to a right forearm strain. In a corresponding move, fellow righty Michael Feliz was selected from Triple-A Worcester, the club announced prior to Thursday’s game against the Yankees.

Danish had made a pair of two-inning relief appearances in the Sox’ last two games against the Rays at Fenway Park, allowing one run on four hits, two walks, and three strikeouts on 64 total pitches. On the 2022 season as a whole, the 27-year-old has posted a 4.02 ERA and 4.74 FIP to go along with 25 strikeouts to eight walks over 26 outings spanning 31 1/3 innings of work.

Feliz, meanwhile, joins the Red Sox for the first time this season after making four appearances for the club in 2021. The 29-year-old signed a minor-league deal with Boston in December and broke camp with Worcester this spring.

In 18 appearances (three starts) for the WooSox this season, Feliz has produced a 3.28 ERA and 2.85 FIP with 28 strikeouts to nine walks across 24 2/3 innings pitched. He works with a four-seam fastball, slider, and changeup.

The Sox were able to add Feliz to their 40-man roster without making a corresponding move since they designated Hansel Robles for assignment on Wednesday.

On that note, Feliz is out of minor-league options, so Boston would need to designate him for assignment if they intended on removing him from the major-league roster anytime soon. And since he has more than three years of big-league service time, Feliz has the ability to reject an outright assignment to the minor-leagues in favor of free agency if he were to clear waivers.

(Picture of Tyler Danish: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox invite Michael Feliz, Zack Kelly, Rob Refsnyder, and Christin Stewart to spring training

The Red Sox have added four non-roster invitees to their 2022 spring training roster, the club announced earlier Tuesday afternoon. In other words, the signings of right-handers Michael Feliz and Zack Kelly and outfielders Rob Refsnyder and Christin Stewart to minor-league deals have all been made official.

Feliz originally joined the Red Sox on a minor-league pact back in August, at a time when the club was navigating its way through a COVID-19 pandemic and was in need of additional depth.

The 28-year-old had his contract selected from Triple-A Worcester on September 6 and appeared in four games for Boston, allowing a total of two runs on four hits, one walk, and five strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings of relief.

11 days after getting called up, Feliz lost his spot on the Sox’ 40-man roster when he he was designated for assignment. The Dominican-born righty was claimed by the Athletics on Sept. 20, but was designated and subsequently released by Oakland before season’s end.

Since making his major-league debut in 2015, Feliz has posted a 5.33 ERA and 4.14 FIP to go along with 324 strikeouts to 107 walks across 227 appearances (one start) spanning 246 2/3 innings of work between the Astros, Pirates, Reds, Red Sox, and Athletics. He operates with a three-pitch mix that consists of a four-seam fastball, slider, and changeup, per Baseball Savant.

Kelly, on the other hand, also spent at least part of the 2021 season with the Red Sox organization, though he did not and has yet to pitch at the major-league level.

Originally signed to a minors pact by Boston last December, Kelly impressed many this year by putting up a 2.18 ERA, 2.64 FIP, and 69:18 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 36 outings (45 1/3 innings) between Double-A Portland and Triple-A Worcester.

The 26-year-old reliever went undrafted out of Division II Newberry College in 2017 and previously spent time in the Athletics and Angels organizations. After such a successful 2021 campaign, Kelly re-signed with the Sox last month and could very well be on the cusp of making his big-league debut in 2022.

Turning to the position players now, both Refsnyder and Stewart figure to provide the Red Sox with upper-minors outfield depth.

Refsnyder, who turns 31 in March, was initially selected by the Yankees in the fifth round of the 2012 amateur draft and broke in with New York in 2015. Since then, the right-handed hitter has spent time with eight different organizations (Yankees, Blue Jays, Guardians, Rays, Diamondbacks, Reds, Rangers, Twins) while appearing in a total of 232 major-league games over that stretch.

This past season with Minnesota, Refsnyder slashed .245/.235/.338 with seven doubles, two home runs, 12 RBIs, 21 runs scored, one stolen base, 17 walks, and 40 strikeouts over 51 games (157 plate appearances) while seeing time at all three outfield positions. He also posted a 1.046 OPS in 18 games for the Twins’ Triple-A affiliate.

Stewart, who turned 28 earlier this month, was selected by the Tigers in the first round of the 2015 draft out of the University of Tennessee. He made his major-league debut for Detroit in 2018 and spent parts of three seasons (2018-2020) with the club.

Over the course of those three seasons, Stewart batted .225/.300/.376 with 29 doubles, two triples, 15 home runs, 59 RBIs, 45 runs scored, 49 walks, and 146 strikeouts over 157 games spanning 587 trips to the plate. He did so while strictly playing left field.

Right before the start of the 2021 season, the Tigers designated Stewart for assignment and later outrighted him off their 40-man roster after he cleared waivers. The left-handed hitter spent the entirety of the year with Triple-A Toledo and wound up slashing .254/.339/.538 (127 wRC+) to go along with 13 doubles, five triples, 21 homers, 58 RBIs, 51 runs scored, two stolen bases, 33 walks, and 100 strikeouts in 89 games and 343 plate appearances.

With the additions of Kelly, Feliz, Refsnyder, and Stewart, the Red Sox now have 43 players on their spring training roster. This includes the 39 players currently on Boston’s 40-man roster.

(Picture of Michael Feliz: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

Red Sox re-sign right-handed reliever Michael Feliz to minor-league deal for 2022 season, per report

The Red Sox have re-signed right-handed reliever Michael Feliz to a minor-league contract for the 2022 season, according to The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier. The deal includes an invite to major-league spring training.

Feliz, 28, spent the 2021 season with four different organizations. He began the year with the Pirates, was designated for assignment and claimed off waivers by the Reds in May, was released by Cincinnati in late August, and signed a minors pact with Boston shortly thereafter.

After initially being assigned to Triple-A Worcester out of the gate, Feliz had his contract selected by the Red Sox on September 6 while the club was navigating its way through a COVID-19 outbreak.

In four relief appearances for Boston, the Dominican-born righty posted a 3.38 ERA and 6.73 FIP to go along with five strikeouts to one walk over 5 1/3 innings of work before being designated for assignment on Sept. 17.

Three days later, Feliz was claimed off waivers by the Athletics, but Oakland let him go after he made just one appearance with the club.

Per Baseball Savant, the 6-foot-4, 250 pound hurler operates with a three-pitch mix that consists of a four-seam fastball that averaged 93.8 mph this year, a slider that opponents only hit .182 off of this year, and a changeup.

Feliz, who does not turn 29 until next June, is represented by Rep 1 Baseball, the same agency that represents Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers.

The hard-throwing right-hander becomes the third minor-league signing the Red Sox have made in the last two days, joining the likes of outfielders Christin Stewart and Rob Refsnyder. Boston has brought back right-handers Caleb Simpson, Zack Kelly and Michael Gettys on minor-league deals for the 2022 campaign as well.

(Picture of Michael Feliz: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

Red Sox lose reliever Michael Feliz on waivers to Athletics

Former Red Sox reliever Michael Feliz has been claimed off waivers by the Athletics, the club announced earlier Monday afternoon.

Feliz was initially designated for assignment when the Sox needed to clear a spot on their 40-man roster for the additions of Matt Barnes and Chris Sale, who were both activated from the COVID-19 related injured list this past Friday.

The 28-year-old right-hander originally signed a minor-league with Boston in late August, shortly after getting released by the Cincinnati Reds, and was promptly assigned to Triple-A Worcester.

In just two appearances for the WooSox, Feliz worked a pair of scoreless innings before having his contract selected by the big-league club on September 6. His Red Sox debut was less than memorable, though, as he served up two home runs in the process of getting roughed up by the Rays at Fenway Park the following day.

Taking that outing into consideration, Feliz wound up allowing a total of two earned runs on four hits, one walk, and five strikeouts over four appearances spanning 5 1/3 innings of work in his brief stint with the Sox. That’s good for an ERA of 3.38, a FIP of 6.72, and an OPS against of .819.

While he did look considerably better in his final three outings as opposed to his first one, the Dominican native still lost his spot on Boston’s 40-man roster when it was time for the club to add reinforcements (Barnes and Sale) back into the mix.

Assuming he appears in a game for his new squad, the Athletics will become the fourth team Feliz has pitched for this season, as he had also appeared in a total of 16 games between the Pirates and Reds before joining the Red Sox earlier this summer.

(Picture of Michael Feliz: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)