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Barnes surrenders two homers in return to 'pen

ST. PETERSBURG -- Matt Barnes' Saturday began in transit to an airport that would transport him from the New England area to St. Petersburg so he could suit up and be ready if the Red Sox needed him.

Several hours later, Barnes was up and throwing for the Red Sox, entering in an eventual 4-1 loss to the Rays with one away in the seventh inning. Over his 1 2/3 innings of work, he allowed two solo home runs while striking out four.

Video: BOS@TB: Longoria goes long to give Rays 4-1 lead

"It was a little hectic," said Barnes, who caught an 8:30 a.m. ET flight that landed around 11:30 a.m. and arrived at Tropicana Field at 1 p.m. "There are no excuses obviously for me giving up the runs, because I still have to be able to perform and put up zeros. It has been a long day, but it is part of the profession."

To make room for Barnes on the roster, the Red Sox optioned Travis Shaw back to Pawtucket.

Red Sox manager John Farrell said that the move had been made in order for Boston to bolster some bullpen depth.

"Given the number of innings we've pitched the last couple of ballgames out of the bullpen, we needed a fresh arm, one that could go multiple innings," Farrell said before the game. "Matt comes back to us to fill that role."

Barnes' last stint with the Red Sox spanned from May 9 to June 14, when he went 2-2 with a 4.80 ERA in 14 relief appearances. His only other appearance for Boston came on April 25, when he pitched two scoreless innings.

Barnes had allowed three runs and fanned nine over 5 1/3 frames during his recent stint with the PawSox. His last appearance was Wednesday, when he allowed a run on three hits while tossing 30 pitches.

"When he first went down there, he had a couple of outings that were strong," Farrell said. "His last time out may not have been that sharp, but given that he's been with us a couple of different times, there's familiarity, there's an understanding of what the big league environment is and we felt like he was the best choice of those available."

Troy Provost-Heron is an associate reporter for
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