The Red Sox acquired reliever Mauricio Llovera from the Giants, per a club announcement. Minor league righty Marques Johnson is going to San Francisco in return. The Sox transferred Kaleb Ort from the 15-day to the 60-day injured list to create space on the 40-man roster for Llovera, whom San Francisco had recently designated for assignment.
Llovera, 27, has pitched for the Giants in each of the past two seasons. The right-hander got into 17 games last year, working to a 4.41 ERA through 16 1/3 innings. San Francisco non-tendered him at the start of the offseason but brought him back on a new minor league pact.
The Venezuela native worked to a 3.92 ERA over 20 2/3 frames in a hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League. San Francisco selected his contract in early July, deploying him in five big league contests. He worked 5 1/3 frames, allowing a run on four hits with five strikeouts and two walks.
Llovera has exhausted his option years, meaning the Giants couldn’t send him back to the minors once they called him up. They designated him for assignment on Saturday to make room in the bullpen for Luke Jackson to return from the injured list. Llovera’s upper minors production intrigued the Sox enough they’re willing to install him in the middle innings.
Boston also can’t option him to the minors, so he’ll be on the MLB roster once he reports to the club. He’s the third upper level right-handed relief arm added to the organization within the past two days. The Sox acquired Nick Robertson and Justin Hagenman from the Dodgers in the Enrique Hernández trade. Both those pitchers were assigned to Triple-A Worcester as upper minors depth.
In return for a pitcher who’d been squeezed off the roster, San Francisco picks up a low minors reliever. Johnson was an 11th-round selection out of Long Beach State last season. He owns a 6.55 ERA through 34 1/3 innings across 28 outings at Low-A. Johnson has punched out 27.9% of opponents but is walking batters at an alarming 15.6% clip.
Ort has been out since July 5 with inflammation in his throwing elbow. He’s now ineligible to return to the MLB roster until the first week of September. The 31-year-old has a 6.26 ERA over 23 innings on the season.