After missing the previous 14 games with an abdominal strain, Boston Red Sox superstar outfielder Mookie Betts has been activated from the 10-day disabled list, and will make his return tonight against the Baltimore Orioles.
To make room for Betts on the 25-man active roster, first baseman Sam Travis was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket. Betts is leading off for the Red Sox tonight, and he says the discomfort that he was experiencing in his abdominal is pretty much gone.
Here’s what Betts told Evan Drellich of NBC Boston when asked if he was still feeling the injury:
“No, no. Right now everything’s pretty gone. We’ll see how the game goes today after nine innings.”
For Betts this was his first time ever on the disabled list, and it interrupted what was a monster start for the 25-year-old. Through 49 games this season, Betts is slashing .359/.437/.750 with 17 home runs, 37 runs batted in, and 13 stolen bases. Betts’ 214 wRC+ is the highest mark among qualified players in baseball so far this season, per FanGraphs.
The Red Sox didn’t miss a beat without Betts in the lineup, as they still have the most wins in Major League Baseball at 44, but that’s more of a credit to the tremendous depth Boston has as an organization. J.D. Martinez has been swinging a monster bat all season long as he leads all of baseball with 21 homers, and Andrew Benintendi went on a hot streak during Betts’ absence.
With Travis being optioned, the Red Sox are still playing with a short-bench and a 13-man pitching staff. Brock Holt, Blake Swihart, and Sandy Leon/Christian Vazquez make up that bench right now with Dustin Pedroia on the disabled list. Once Pedroia returns, Eduardo Nunez will likely transition back into a utility role, where he will help out Boston’s bench big time with the ability to play any infield and outfield position.
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