The Red Sox have a bit of a weird schedule this week with two days off in the span of three days and a doubleheader in the middle of them. Today is that middle day with the team playing a pair of games, and before things get started they made a few roster moves. Boston called up Deivy Grullón as their 29th man for the doubleheader and also promoted Christian Arroyo to the active roster. To make room on the active roster, Matt Hall was optioned down to the Alternate Site, while Andrew Benintendi was moved to the 45-day injured list to make room for Arroyo on the 40-man roster.
- INF Christian Arroyo was selected to the major league roster from the Alternate Training Site.— Red Sox (@RedSox) September 8, 2020
- To make room for Arroyo on the 40-man roster, OF Andrew Benintendi was transferred to the 45-day injured list.
Grullón is in an interesting position as the 29th man, as he is likely to get the start in second game of this doubleheader. Normally you don’t see a club use the 29th man on a catcher, but it makes sense for the Red Sox. They clearly aren’t going to start Christian Vázquez — who does get the start in the first game — behind the plate in both of these games, and with Kevin Plawecki likely still dealing with some pain in his hand this 29th man allows you to give Plawecki the string of days off here without having to put him on the IL. Grullón, meanwhile, gets a chance to earn an extra look ahead of next season. He also gets a chance to potentially play against the team that just designated him for assignment, allowing the Red Sox to claim him off waivers.
As for Arroyo, this is an interesting move that puts an extra position player on the roster with Hall being optioned. For what I believe is the first time this season, they will be rolling with 14 position players. Injury again could be factoring in here with Yairo Muñoz a bit banged up from this past weekend. I would also expect this to be a short-term solution and by Thursday they will decide whether or not Muñoz will need an IL stint. You’d normally worry about overworking a staff on a doubleheader, but A) you still have 14 pitchers on the roster and B) they had a day off yesterday, another one tomorrow and one next Monday as well, so there’s no long stretch of games ahead on the schedule.
The final note here is that Benintendi being moved to the 45-day injured list seems like a clear-cut sign that the team is ready to shut the outfielder down for the rest of the year, something Ron Roenicke confirmed this afternoon. It makes sense given where the Red Sox stand this year. We’ll be talking plenty about Benintendi over the winter, but 2021 is clearly a massive year for him and now that’s where all the focus will be.