In a quick flurry of roster moves, the Red Sox have optioned Henry Owens to Triple-A Pawtucket, called Sean O'Sullivan up to take his place, and made room for him on the 40-man roster by placing Pablo Sandoval on the 60-day disabled list.
For Owens, it's a decisive and, frankly, earned vote of no-confidence, at least as he is right now. While control has always been Owens' issue, it's been worse this year than ever before, to the point where something is clearly just not right with him. He walked six batters in the process of recording nine outs last night against the White Sox, and while the Red Sox did eventually go on to win that game, it's just not a viable path to success in the majors. He'll have to figure out what's going wrong down below, where he can't hurt the Red Sox.
As for his replacement...well, who saw Sean O'Sullivan getting a chance with the Red Sox this year? While it hasn't been made clear if he's going to be making the start for Owens the next time his spot comes up in the rotation, it actually seems possible. O'Sullivan has a 3.00 ERA in five starts so far this season, with a surprising 32:5 K:BB in 33 innings of work. He's never had much success at the major league level, but With Eduardo Rodriguez' return on the horizon, the Red Sox really just need the one start from him.
Of course, usually in this situation, the Sox could add another bullpen or bench member for a brief period between starts. But they've been doing so much of that of late that some of the players they would call up--Marco Hernandez, for instance--are off limits due to the mandatory 10-day wait to recall a player after they're optioned, barring injury. Maybe he's just here in case the Sox need a long relief arm, but it doesn't seem all that likely given just how many relievers they already have on the roster.
As for Sandoval...well, no surprises there. Let's resume not thinking about his situation.