TORONTO -- Minnesota Twins first baseman Justin Morneau cleared waivers this week and might seem like a potential focus for the Red Sox, given the struggles Mike Napoli has had in the last month.
After Tuesday night's 0-for-5, 3-strikeout performance, Napoli is hitting a meager .119 (5-for-42) with 20 strikeouts since July 31. He has now struck out three times in three consecutive games, and has fanned an alarming 55 times in 120 at-bats since July 1. At that rate, Napoli would strike out 229 times in a 500 at-bat season. The single-season record for strikeouts by a batter is 223, set by Mark Reynolds in 2009.
But a baseball source indicated that the Sox don't have any interest in making a deal for Morneau. The Sox, the source said, believe that between switch-hitting Daniel Nava and lefty-hitting Mike Carp, the Sox have suitable options in-house if Napoli doesn't bounce back.
Clay Buchholz threw a "lighter side" session Tuesday, in the words of John Farre;;. with a "more aggressive bullpen planned" for Wednesday afternoon.
The plan is for Buchholz, sidelined since the second week of June with inflammation in the right shoulder, to have some "up-and-downs" -- i.e., simulating different innings in which he pitches, then sits down and rests, and then pitches again . . . much as he would do in a game.
If Buchholz clears Wednesday's hurdle, he could be cleared for a true simulated game as early as Friday, though the Sox are wary of setting timetables.
"I think [Wednesday] will be that real first aggressive test in a bullpen setting," said Farrell.
Catcher David Ross caught for Pawtucket Tuesday night as he continued his rehab assignment following a second concussion. He went 0-for-3, striking out all three times he batted, in the PawSox' 5-1 win over Louisville.
Ross spent the weekend in Portland. He will DH Wednesday with an increase of innings behind the plate as the week goes on.
Ross is eligible to come off the 60-day DL Sunday, but likely won't be activated until Monday, when the Red Sox open a six-game West Coast interleague road trip.
Outfielder Ryan Kalish, who underwent shoulder surgery in Los Angeles, Tuesday underwent a procedure on his neck in California.
It's the latest in a series of setbacks for Kalish, who has played just 93 games -- minors and big leagues combined -- in the last three years.
"It's unfortunate," said Farrell. "Hopefully, through the rehab, he gets back to the player he was when he first came up (in 2010) because he was an exciting young player -- a guy who was good on both sides of the ball and handled himself as a real pro. We're hopeful he gets back to that."
Kalish is hopeful of being ready for spring training.
Farrell was asked if he was surprised that Dustin Pedroia, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Jonny Gomes chose to spend their off-day watching the Blue Jays and Oakland A's play Monday afternoon.
"Not one bit," he answered. "Getting to know this group and how important the game is to each guy individually . . . to see them here on the off-day (is consistent) with some of the things we've witnessed throughout the course of the year."