Red Sox land Abad to cap busy trade season

Boston also adds Ziegler, Pomeranz, Hill to fortify roster

Red Sox land Abad to cap busy trade season

SEATTLE -- With hours to go before Monday's non-waiver Trade Deadline, the Red Sox fortified their ever-evolving bullpen by adding lefty Fernando Abad from the Twins in exchange for Minor League right-hander Pat Light.

While it was the only move Boston made in the final stretch leading into the Deadline, the Red Sox had one of the most active trade seasons, adding third baseman Aaron Hill, reliever Brad Ziegler, lefty starter Drew Pomeranz and Abad.

"If we had walked in today and said 'OK, we've acquired Pomeranz, Hill, Ziegler and Abad,' people would have said, 'Wow, can't believe how much they did.' but we spaced it over a time period so it doesn't have quite the same oomph," said Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski. "But we're very happy with where we are."

Pomeranz's first K with Red Sox

The 30-year-old Abad has been tremendous against lefties this season, holding them to a .163 average and a .458 OPS.

Abad gives manager John Farrell another weapon to match up with in the late innings. He joins a bullpen that includes All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel, Ziegler, Junichi Tazawa and Clay Buchholz from the right side, and Robbie Ross Jr. from the left side. Boston designated Tommy Layne for assignment to make room for Abad.

Though Koji Uehara is sidelined indefinitely with a right pectoral strain, Farrell is enthused with his options in the late innings.

"We've got a number of guys who have shown the ability to get the off-sided hitter out," said Farrell. "Taz does a very good job against left-handed hitters. Abad now against some right-handed hitters if they show up in that mix. And then getting Craig Kimbrel back is a huge boost for us."

Kimbrel was activated from the disabled list prior to Monday's game against the Mariners at Safeco Field. Abad will be activated when he joins the club on Tuesday, at which point fellow lefty specialist Tommy Layne's roster spot could be in jeopardy.

While the Red Sox have been inconsistent of late, they are enthused about how their roster stacks up heading into the final two months of the season. After Monday's 2-1 win ove Seattle, they trailed by 1 game in the American League East and while leading the Tigers by 1 1/2 games in the Wild Card standings.

Farrell was asked if he thought he had a playoff team.

"I do, yeah," Farrell said. "Now, we've got to go out and execute. There's no question about it. We've got an offense, it's deep, it's dynamic, we've had our share of frustrations along the way. It's a balanced team when you look at both sides of the ball, whether at the plate or from the mound. The bottom line, no question, is for us to go out and execute to our abilities."

Hill's diving catch

The Red Sox don't feel like they were ever close to acquiring White Sox ace Chris Sale, and Dombrowski disputed a report that had him holding late-night discussions with the White Sox on Sunday.

"We didn't talk to the White Sox since Friday," said Dombrowski. "That was the last time we spoke to them. It's just one of those things, where everybody has a right to ask for whatever they want, and you just decided that's not a price you want to pay."

After using the team's top pitching prospect (Anderson Espinoza) to acquire Pomeranz, Dombrowski wasn't inclined to move position-player prospects Yoan Moncada (ranked No. 2 overall by MLBPipeline.com) or Andrew Benintendi (No. 7).

Instead, Dombrowski made a subtle move.

In 39 appearances for the Twins this season, Abad was 1-4 with a 2.65 ERA over 34 innings. He allowed only two home runs and eight extra-base hits, holding opponents to a .317 slugging percentage. A native of the Dominican Republic, Abad has also pitched for the Astros, Nationals and Athletics.

Dombrowski said he isn't counting on being able to acquire anyone through waivers in August. If this is the roster he has, he's comfortable with it and thinks the Red Sox can make a strong run at getting back to the postseason for the first time since 2013.

"I mean, we've got a chance," Dombrowski said. "When I say that, I'm not making that prediction, but we have the capabilities to make it. I like our club."

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.