Jasen Vinlove/USA Today Sports

Why Red Sox added these 3 guys to 40-man roster

Rob Bradford
November 20, 2017 - 5:14 pm

The Red Sox had a few decisions to make. At the end of the day, Chandler Shepherd, Ty Buttrey and Jalen Beeks were the big winners.

Monday, 8 p.m. marked the deadline to add players to teams' 40-man rosters, keeping them away from next month's Rule 5 Draft. With three spots left on their 40-man, the Red Sox decided Shepherd, Buttrey and Beeks -- all pitchers -- were worthy of being protected.

Perhaps the most interesting of the three is Shepherd, who was a non-roster invitee to spring training in 2017 as a reliever.

For the first time in his professional career. Shepherd will head into a season as a starting pitcher, having appeared in 35 games for Triple-A Pawtucket last season, all but one as a reliever. The 25-year-old righty is currently serving in his new role while playing in the Mexican Winter League.

The impetus for Shepherd's conversion was to add to the organization's starting depth, with Brian Johnson (who is out of options) starting spring training as a reliever.

Buttrey will be one to watch in spring training, as well, thanks in large part to a fastball that touches triple-digits. The right-hander, who played in both Double-A Portland and Pawtucket in 2017, also possesses a changeup as his primary secondary pitch.

Beeks also figures to add starting depth, perhaps residing closest to the big leagues of the three. 

The lefty starters held his own upon integrating into the Pawtucket rotation, going 6-7 with a  3.86 ERA in 17 starts, Beeks' fastball can hit 95 mph, but he primarily relies on command and a deceptive delivery for outs.

The odd man out is Justin Haley, who will be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft for a second straight season. (He was taken by the Twins, but returned to the Red Sox after appearing in 10 games for Minnesota.) The 26-year-old Haley started in seven games for Pawtucket upon his return, managing a 2.66 ERA.

Here is the Red Sox' 40-man roster ...

PITCHERS (24): Matt Barnes, Jalen Beeks, Ty Buttrey, Roenis Elias, Heath Hembree, Williams Jerez, Brian Johnson, Joe Kelly, Craig Kimbrel, Austin Maddox, Henry Owens, Drew Pomeranz, Rick Porcello, David Price, Eduardo Rodriguez, Chris Sale, Robby Scott, Chandler Shepherd, Carson Smith, Ben Taylor, Tyler Thornburg, Hector Velazquez, Brandon Workman, Steven Wright.

CATCHERS (3): Sandy Leon, Blake Swihart, Christian Vazquez.

INFIELDERS (9): Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, Marco Hernandez, Brock Holt, Tzu-Wei Lin, Deven Marrero, Dustin Pedroia, Hanley Ramirez, Sam Travis.

OUTFIELDERS (4): Andrew Benintendi, Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr., Bryce Brentz