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Red Sox are short on lefties out of the bullpen after Brennan Bernardino optioned to Worcester

BOSTON -- The Red Sox are going to be short on lefties when they start the 2024 season on Thursday. In a surprising move, the team optioned left-handed reliever Brennan Bernardino to Worcester on Monday night.

Bernardino, 32, was solid out of the Boston bullpen last season, finishing the year with a 3.20 ERA over 55 appearances. He had a very solid start to 2024 in Grapefruit League action, keeping the opposition scoreless over his 6.2 innings of work while allowing three hits and striking out six. 

Following the team's exhibition win in Texas on Monday night, Boston manager Alex Cora said that optioning Bernardino to Triple-A was a difficult decision. He added that while the lefty won't be with the team in Seattle for Opening Day, Bernardino will contribute to the big league club at some point this season.

But for now, Cora will be short on southpaws out of the bullpen, as Monday's move leaves Joely Rodriguez as the only left-hander in the Red Sox bullpen to start the season. The rest of Boston's relief corps is made up of righties Kenley Jansen, Chris Martin, Josh Winckowski, and Chase Anderson, with Greg Weissert, Isaiah Campbell and rookie Justin Slaten also in the mix.

Additionally, all five of Boston's starters -- Brayan Bello, Nick Pivetta, Kutter Crawford, Garrett Whitlock, and Tanner Houck -- are righties.

The Red Sox open their 2024 season Thursday night in Seattle, with Bello set to make his first career Opening Day start for Boston. While the official 2024 Opening Day roster will be announced sometime on Wednesday, you can get to know the 2024 Red Sox here

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