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Tanner Houck will rejoin Red Sox in Baltimore, slated for Friday relief work

Tanner Houck has made three starts this season but will be in the bullpen in Baltimore.Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff

TORONTO — Red Sox righthanders Kutter Crawford and Tanner Houck arrived in Baltimore Thursday and will be activated off the restricted list Friday.

Because they have not been vaccinated for COVID-19, the pitchers could not travel to Canada for the series against the Blue Jays. They instead spent three days at the Red Sox spring training complex in Fort Myers, Fla.

The plan is to use Houck Friday night against the Orioles in a multi-inning relief role behind lefthander Rich Hill.

“I think it’s a good mix,” manager Alex Cora said Thursday. “They’re going to load up with righties and then you can go with Tanner. It’s just taking advantage of the roster.”


Houck was 1-1 with a 3.21 earned run average in three starts. He pitched in relief Sunday at Tampa Bay and threw 1⅔ perfect innings.

Bogaerts gets a break

Shortstop Xander Bogaerts was out of the lineup a day after going 4 for 4 with a walk.

“You guys know how I operate with this,” Cora said. “People might say, ‘He’s hot; he’s swinging it.’ Right?

“But all the running around for x-amount of days, playing on the turf, moving around playing the position that he plays. We talked about it over the weekend and we picked this day. We have to be disciplined.”

J.D. Martinez also was out of the lineup with soreness on his left side. He missed four games with the same issue before returning Monday, then aggravated the problem running the bases Wednesday night.

“We’ve got to be smart about it,” said Cora, who added the hope is Martinez will return on Friday.

The, shall we say, creative lineup that resulted included Kiké Hernández batting cleanup for the first time since 2019 and Jackie Bradley Jr. batting fifth.

Christian Arroyo started for Bogaerts at shortstop and the DH was Travis Shaw. The Sox managed only four hits in a 1-0 loss.


The Jays gave Vladimir Guerrero Jr. a day off.

Seven for Sale

Chris Sale threw a seven-pitch bullpen session in Fort Myers Tuesday. “Not eight, not six. Seven,” Cora said. “That’s the beginning of the progression.” Sale, who is returning from a fractured rib, was placed on the 60-day injured list April 4 … James Paxton is up to 35 pitches in the bullpen as he comes back from Tommy John surgery … Infielder Jonathan Araúz remains in COVID-19 protocol after testing positive April 19 … Lefthander Jeremy Wu-Yelland, the team’s fourth-round pick in the 2020 draft, had Tommy John surgery Wednesday. The 22-year-old was 2-4 with a 3.91 ERA in 23 Single A starts last season.

Sox claim Davis

The Sox filled the open spot on their 40-man roster by claiming 27-year-old righthanded-hitting outfielder Jaylin Davis off waivers from the Giants. He was optioned to Triple A Worcester. Davis hit .159 with a .490 OPS in 26 games for the Giants from 2019-21. He has hit .291 with 38 homers and a .983 OPS in 121 Triple A games . . . Jays manager Charlie Montoyo said catcher Alejandro Kirk dropped his PitchCom speaker between the eighth and ninth innings. Cora saw it and brought it over to the Toronto dugout, which Montoyo said he appreciated . . . The Sox are 2-5 against the Blue Jays and 4-9 in the American League East . . . Righthander John Schreiber, who was called up last Friday, appeared twice in the series and retired seven of the eight batters he faced . . . Twelve of the 20 games this season have been decided by two runs or fewer. The Sox are 5-7 in those games . . . the Jays are 7-2 in one-run games.


Peter Abraham can be reached at peter.abraham@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @PeteAbe.