SEATTLE -- Brandon Workman got called up to the big leagues on Tuesday, albeit in a different role than he's accustomed to. The righty will bolster Boston's bullpen, despite not having been used as a reliever since his undergraduate days at the University of Texas.
The Red Sox received a couple of hits to their bullpen depth recently. Jose De La Torre, who threw 50 pitches over 1 2/3 frames in the club's 11-4 loss Monday, was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket on Tuesday to make room for callup Jackie Bradley Jr., while Alex Wilson was put on the 15-day disabled list as a result of an injury sustained in Monday's loss to Seattle.
"Last night in the second inning of work for Wilson, he felt a little bit of a grabbing or popping sensation in the right thumb and we've got to get him back to Boston to get re-examined," manager John Farrell said. "And this might require some down time for him and that's why he's going to go on the disabled list."
Workman, Boston's second-round pick in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, has excelled in Pawtucket as a starter and is the organization's No. 12 prospect according to MLB.com. The 24-year-old went 3-1 with a 2.80 ERA in six appearances, while striking out 34 batters in 35 1/3 innings.
The ability to pitch multiple innings was a key factor in the decision to call up Workman, said Farrell. The rookie will be counted upon to eat up innings to ease the pressure on Boston's depleted bullpen.
"We have multiple inning guys in both [Workman and Alfredo Aceves]," Farrell said. "Obviously Alfredo may be a little more durable just because he's been in the [starting] role back and forth a couple of times, but unfortunately, the tentative nature of the position player side of it has us one pitcher short from a traditional 12, but we feel like we've got plenty to get through."
Farrell added that it is not uncommon to give future starters some experience in the bullpen as a way of easing the transition to life in the Major Leagues.
Jacob Thorpe is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.