The Red Sox have recalled outfielder/first baseman Alex Hassan from Triple-A Pawtucket, according to Danny Ventura from the Boston Herald and confirmed by the Boston Globe's Peter Abraham. The promotion for Hassan comes after Ryan Lavarnway, who just got to Boston for the first time this season himself, left Thursday night's game with soreness in his left wrist. Manager John Farrell said that Lavarnway felt the twinge in his rest after a swing in his first at-bat, and that his backup first baseman would undergo an MRI Friday.
Hassan is a Quincy, Mass. native and attended Boston College High School. The 26-year-old played at Duke before he was selected in the 20th round in the 2009 MLB Draft. Hassan has spent at least parts of the last three years in Pawtucket. In 2013, the right-hander hit .321/.431/.460 with four home runs and 14 doubles in 55 games after missing the start of the season with a broken bone in his foot. He's struggled out of the gate this season, hitting .217/.318/.303 with one home run and 10 doubles through his first 45 games. However, he's one of the only available in-house options who has any first base experience at all now that Mike Napoli is on the DL and Lavarnway has followed him there: Travis Shaw just got to Pawtucket earlier this week, and isn't on the 40-man roster.
When Hassan was Rule-5 eligible for the first time in November, 2012, the Red Sox placed him on the 40-man roster to protect him. Hassan has shown very good plate discipline through his rise in the minor leagues in addition to an above-average ability to recognize pitches, and the idea was to keep him around in case the rest of his game caught up to his batting eye. He'll get his first chance on the big-league scene to show it has soon.
Update: The extent of Lavarnway's injury is now known, and it's not the best news for someone in their final option year:
Lavarnway has broken hamate bone in left wrist. Surgery being scheduled. Out 4-6 weeks at minimum. #RedSoxTalk— Sean McAdam (@Sean_McAdam) May 30, 2014