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Red Sox News & Links: Rafael Devers Challenges Chaim Bloom At Deadline

Plus, will Alex Verdugo be traded?

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New York Mets v Boston Red Sox Photo by Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images

Chris Sale will make his first rehab appearance for Worcester tomorrow. He’ll then make at least one more before returning to Boston. There’s been speculation about whether he’d come back as an opener or reliever in order to give him time to stretch out his arm while still helping the big league team, but it sounds like the Sox don’t want to mess with him too much: he’s going to start. (Julian McWilliams, Boston Globe)

Tanner Houck is gearing up for a return as well. There’s no ambiguity with respect to what he wants to do: he says he wants to be a starter pitcher for the rest of his career. (Gayle Troiani, NESN)

Nick Pivetta, meanwhile, already expressed his fruition upon being moved to the bullpen months ago, only to subsequently thrive in the role. But he’s going to be a starter once more (at least for one game), as he’ll take the ball against the Mariners tonight. (Chris Cotillo, MassLive)

As two pitchers get set to return, another departs. Joely Rodriguez, who only recently returned from the IL, is heading back with a sore hip. (Keagan Stiefel, NESN)

Is the Red Sox front office going to try to play the old “our returning injured star is our trade deadline acquisition” move with Chris Sale? If they do, it sounds like Rafael Devers won’t be happy about it. Devers was uncharacteristically outspoken about wanting the Sox to be aggressive and add pitching, saying “[e]verybody knows what we need. Hopefully we can get that in the next few days. We can’t control that as players. All we can do is give 100 percent on the field. But we need pitching. . . We would like them to reward us with a few good players coming in before the deadline.” (Peter Abraham Boston Globe)

At the very least, we know that the Sox are actively engaged in talks. And according to one source inside the game, they have even opened by offering Alex Verdugo. (Sean McAdam, Chris Cotillo, MassLive)

That’s an interesting contrast to the sitution with Justin Turner. Teams have been asking about the veteran slugger, but the Sox have told them he isn’t going anywhere. (Chad Jennings, The Athletic)