The best-case scenario would seem to have Bailey returning at around the All-Star break next season.
The Red Sox control Bailey's rights for one more season but are all but certain to non-tender him. That would make him a free agent, but he could return to Boston at a discounted rate.
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.