Boston Red Sox's Matt Barnes follows through on a pitch against the Houston Astros in the seventh inning of a baseball game, Monday, May 16, 2022, in Boston. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

BOSTON (AP) — Boston Red Sox closer Matt Barnes was placed on the 15-day injured list Wednesday with right shoulder inflammation, and left-hander Matt Strahm was activated from the COVID-19 IL prior to a game against Cincinnati.

An All-Star in 2021, Barnes struggled down the stretch last season and has failed to regain his best form this year. The 31-year-old has a 7.94 ERA in 20 appearances, going 0-3 with two saves.

Strahm is 2-2 with a 3.68 ERA in 18 games this season.

Boston was 2-4 heading into the finale of a seven-game homestand against Baltimore and Cincinnati on Wednesday night. The bullpen is a major reason why the Red Sox are stuck in fourth place in the AL East, with the club’s relievers combining for a 3.96 ERA, ranked 10th in the AL.

“We were hoping to have a more settled picture in the bullpen than we have,” Bloom said.


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