ST. PETERSBURG -- Needing roster space to make way for Mike Cameron, who will be activated on Tuesday night, the Red Sox were forced to designate outfielder Darnell McDonald for assignment after Monday's win over the Rays.
It was a hard conversation for manager Terry Francona to have with McDonald, who has done everything the club asked since joining the club on April 20. In fact, McDonald made a dramatic entrance on that first day with the Red Sox, belting a pinch-hit, game-tying homer and then beating the Rangers with a walk-off single off the Green Monster.
He hit .263 with three homers and 11 RBIs and was Boston's primary center fielder during the time that Jacoby Ellsbury and Cameron were both on the disabled list.
"While I was here, I had a good time," said McDonald. "I got a chance to play every day. Like I said, it's a tough situation for everybody. Tito expressed that to me. It's one of those things. Like I said, I hope some other doors have opened up from getting an opportunity here."
Though Francona would love to see McDonald stay in the organization and make a return stint to the Red Sox at some point this season, he is also rooting for the outfielder to get a job on another team's Major League roster. Francona is skeptical that McDonald will clear waivers and stay in the Boston organization.
"I hope for his sake, somebody claims him," Francona said. "I would be shocked if somebody doesn't. I guess I hope for our sake they don't. That's what we told him. We had to do it. We're very appreciative of what he did for us. I hope his days in our uniform aren't over. I have a feeling they will be."