In an attempt to generate more speed off the bench for the stretch run in September, the Boston Red Sox acquired former Detroit Tigers outfielder Quintin Berry from the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday in exchange for pitcher Clayton Mortensen.
Berry, who will report to Triple-A Pawtucket on Wednesday has spent most of the 2013 season between the Tigers Triple-A team in the Toledo Mudhens and the Triple-A Omaha in the Royals system. Between those two stops, Berry’s offensive numbers were abysmal as he hit only .193 3 HRs 31 RBIs in 97 games. Despite the poor numbers, he did steal 28 bases in 32 attempts.
The trade for Berry is similar in regards to what the Red Sox have done in the past. Everyone remembers the impact Dave Roberts made in 2004, when he was acquired at the trade deadline and was a key factor on the base paths during the World Series run. Berry may have that chance to repeat what Roberts did for Boston during that stretch run in 04.
Mortensen has pitched very well for the Pawsox over the past three weeks and over his last four starts has allowed only five runs. Overall in 14 games (6 starts), he went 3-0 with a 2.47 ERA in 43.2 innings.
Despite his success, it was hard to see Mortensen having much of a future with Boston after struggling with the team earlier this year posting a 5.34 ERA in 24 relief appearances.
On top of that, he will be a minor league free agent after the season and it would have been unlikely the Red Sox would bring him back.
Manager John Farrell told the Boston media that Berry could play an important role as a pinch runner in September and even October potentially so expect him to be called up on September 1 when rosters expand and fill a reserve role.