Steven Wright

Red Sox set roster: Brandon Workman, Matt Barnes to Pawtucket; Koji Uehara, Joe Kelly on disabled list

Rob Bradford
April 03, 2015 - 12:19 pm

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- With two games left in the Grapefruit League season, the Red Sox have set their roster heading into Opening Day in Philadelphia. Prior to Friday night's game against the Twins at JetBlue Park, John Farrell announced both Matt Barnes and Brandon Workman would be starting the season with Triple-A Pawtucket. Barnes, who had been working as a reliever throughout big league camp, will be stretched out to start with the PawSox, while Workman remains in the bullpen. Barnes appeared to have a legitimate chance at making the club with the team liking his ability to add a swing-and-miss element to the bullpen. "He showed well," said Farrell of the righty. "As we got deeper into camp, a number of guys began to throw the ball much better, Brandon Workman included, so we felt like with the matchups which we're going against, we start the year with three lefthanders in the bullpen, and that was the overriding decision." Regarding Workman, Farrell said, "He'€™s moving in the right direction for sure. There were some tangible adjustments he did make. Because of the early camp performance, he found himself behind some other guys. But more importantly he takes with him that he'€™s on the right path and he'€™s performed at a high level here at shorter stints for us. We'€™re well aware of what he'€™s capable of and he'€™s just in a better place as far as throwing the baseball right now." Starting the season on the 15-day disabled list will be pitchers Joe Kelly (biceps) and Koji Uehara (hamstring), with both eligible to come off the DL April 11. Kelly, who will throw approximately 80 pitches in a minor league game at Fenway South Monday, is a candidate to get the start in the Red Sox' second game against the Yankees in New York. Another possibility for the April 11 start at Yankee Stadium will be Steven Wright, whose initial role will be dependent on Kelly's availability. The three lefties the Red Sox will enter the regular season with include: Craig Breslow, Tommy Layne and Robbie Ross, who came on strong over the past two weeks after battling a knee injury early on in camp. With Uehara down, Edward Mujica will serve as closer to start the season, with Alexi Ogando, Anthony Varvaro and Junichi Tazawa filling out the bullpen. There are really no surprises when it comes to the position players, with Brock Holt, Daniel Nava, Sandy Leon and Allen Craig making up the bench behind starters Mike Napoli, Dustin Pedroia, Xander Bogaerts, Pablo Sandoval, Hanley Ramirez, Shane Victorino, Mookie Betts and Ryan Hanigan. Holt got the start at shortstop Friday night in the place of Bogaerts just to get some work at the position heading into the season. Clay Buchholz will get the start on Opening Day, with Rick Porcello, Justin Masterson and Wade Miley following. This will be the first major league Opening Day for Betts, Holt, Wright and Layne.