Brock Holt

Red Sox pregame notes: Brock Holt available off bench; Matt Barnes optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket

Ryan Hannable
August 23, 2015 - 8:18 am

Although Brock Holt will miss his fourth straight game, it appears he's nearing a return. Holt will miss Sunday's game after originally being in Saturday's lineup, but was a late scratch with left oblique tightness. Interim manager Torey Lovullo said he would be available in an emergency situation Sunday. "Brock's doing OK," Lovullo said. "Still a little nicked up. His left oblique has given him problems, but he is available today if needed in an emergency situation. We're looking to get him in the lineup tomorrow. I had a good discussion with Brock this morning where we just felt like it was best to give him one more day, give him a blow, get ahead of it and see where he's at tomorrow." The utility man has played 99 games this season and this comes after he played a career-high 106 last year. Lovullo said the team is aware of the numbers of games played and him struggling in the second half of last year. He hit .219 after hitting .327 in the first half. "It's been on our radar that he's had a history of wearing down, but I think overall you just have to look at the guy, productivity and what he means to the ball club," he said. "Whether he is tired or not, he has such great value to this team that we're going to find a spot for him in the right situation. What can he do? I don't know if he can work any harder behind the scenes. "He's a very caring guy. He understands what he means to this team. He wants to stay healthy -- whether he tweaks his offseason program I'm not sure, but I think in time we're going to find a guy who can be consistent throughout the year health wise." -- Sunday is just an off-day for Hanley Ramirez. -- Following Saturday's game and Matt Barnes' second major league start, he was optioned back to Triple-A Pawtucket. With Rick Porcello returning to the rotation this week, the team needed to open up a spot. Barnes went 5 1/3 innings and allowed five runs. Overall in his two starts, he allowed 11 earned runs in 10 1/3 innings. Reliever Jonathan Aro was recalled as the corresponding roster move. -- Lovullo revealed the Red Sox rotation for the upcoming series in Chicago: Monday: Joe Kelly Tuesday: Wade Miley Wednesday: Porcello It sets up Henry Owens to start the series opener next Friday in New York against the Mets. -- Steven Wright will not go on the road trip, as he is still feeling some concussion symptoms. He will be reevaluated Tuesday. -- Sunday will be the end of a 10-game homestand, which has been anything but ordinary. John Farrell announced he has Stage 1 lymphoma on the first day, then Dave Dombrowski was hired as president of baseball operations and Ben Cherington said he wouldn't stick around. Lovullo said his main focus has been keeping his players focused, but also acknowledged it's been a grueling stretch of games. "I don't think there's any way to sum it up to tell you the truth," he said. "Some of the days have been great, some of the days have been unpredictable and some of the days have been a complete surprise. As I sit here working through this whole process, it's been a whirl-wind for me. It's been a crash course for me, but each day I want to make sure that I am consistent with my actions so that these players are ready to play a game. I don't look beyond that. I want to make sure we stay united through some tough times and not look past the game. I think our guys have responded to that every day."