Red Sox nominate Hirokazu Sawamura and Austin Davis for assignment

Red Sox

Austin Davis and Hirokazu Sawamura were slated for assignment after lackluster outings.

Boston Red Sox’s Hirokazu Sawamura on the mound between the pitches against the Tampa Bay Rays during the sixth inning of a baseball game. Photo AP/Steven Senne

The Red Sox promoted Zack Kelly and Kaleb Ort to join their bullpen on Sunday, according to multiple reports.

To make room, the team reportedly designated Hirokazu Sawamura and Austin Davis for assignment.

Kelly will make his major league debut after striking out 72 while walking 25 in 49.2 innings pitched this season with the WooSox. The 27-year-old signed with the A’s as an undrafted free agent in 2017, netting just $500 for his signing bonus. In 2020, he tore the UCL in his pitching arm but avoided Tommy John surgery and climbed through the Red Sox minor leagues with a fastball and a change that Sox Prospects rated offers ‘more potential’ and “above average potential”.

Ort, meanwhile, returns to the team with 15 major league innings under his belt this season, in which he allowed 15 runs, 24 hits and seven walks. Those stats are somewhat skewed by his disastrous July 22 outing against the Blue Jays, which the Red Sox gave up 28-5 (Ort allowed eight runs on seven hits over four innings). The 30-year-old is 98 mph fastball and 2.98 ERA with 62 strikeouts and 20 walks in 45.1 innings pitched with the WooSox this season.

Neither Kelly nor Ort are ranked in the Sox Prospect Top 60.

Sawamura and Davis, meanwhile, were DFAs after lackluster performances in the Red Sox’ 12-4 loss to the Rays. Sawamura allowed four hits and three runs in one inning, while Davis allowed three hits and four runs in his frame alone.

Red Sox manager Alex Cora was asked about Davis’ recent struggles.

“It’s more about command,” Cora said. “You see the WHIP, you see the steps, you see the accounts. He was not able to put people aside.


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