BALTIMORE — If there's a play-in game tomorrow, who pitches for the Red Sox?
How about Bruce Chen?
Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports is reporting today that the Red Sox are investigating trade possibilities at this late hour to find a pitcher for a possible Game 163.
• Any traded player must have cleared waivers already.
• The player would not be eligible for the postseason roster, having been obtained after Aug. 31.
• The Sox would have to find space on the 40-man roster.
Chen, 34, is a well-traveled lefty from Panama who is 12-8 with a 3.98 ERA this season. He has not faced the Rays this season but was 1-1, 0.92 in six appearances (two starts) from 2007-2010. Over 19.2 innings he allowed six runs (2 earned) on 11 hits with six walks and 17 strikeouts.
Johnny Damon owns Chen (13 of 28, 5 extra base hits) but the rest of the Rays roster has little experience against him. B.J. Upton is 1 for 12, Evan Longoria 0 for 2, Ben Zobrist 1 for 7 and Casey Kotchman 0 for 4.
The Royals, rightfully so, would expect some value in return for Chen. The Sox would likely have to give up two solid prospects.
It sounds a little crazy, bringing in a pitcher for one game, especially the likes of Bruce Chen. But the alternatives are Tim Wakefield or John Lackey on short rest or Kyle Weiland.
Weiland has started twice against the Rays this month. He gave up seven earned runs on nine hits and five walks over seven innings. Lackey is 1-2, 6.46 in three starts against the Rays this season. Wakefield is 0-2, 4.11 in three games, two starts.