Boscan to stay until Ross is ready to catch

Boscan to stay until Ross is ready to catch

ATLANTA -- Manager Fredi Gonzalez said the Braves plan to keep three catchers until backup David Ross returns to full health, likely before their three-game series in Miami beginning Tuesday.

Ross strained his right groin on a check swing Friday. The injury, combined with catcher Brian McCann's bout with the flu last week, forced the Braves to call up J.C. Boscan from Triple-A Gwinnett on Saturday to be the team's third catcher. Atlanta then sent reliever Kris Medlen to Triple-A on Tuesday with the purpose of stretching him out to become a starter, replacing him on the roster with outfielder Jose Costanza.

The moves mean the Braves are now short in the bullpen. But thanks to off-days Thursday and Monday, Gonzalez said he is comfortable using starter Randall Delgado out of the bullpen this weekend against the Nationals in Washington.

"He can help us in the bullpen if we get short," Gonzalez said. "Delgado can help us in that weekend series in D.C."

Ross said his groin is feeling better, but he hasn't run at full speed. Once that happens, he said, he would be able to play.

"I caught [Tuesday] in the bullpen," Ross said. "I could catch if I had to. Running is the thing."

Once Ross is ready, Gonzalez said the Braves would call up a reliever. Right-hander Cory Gearrin would likely be the leading candidate. Entering Wednesday, he has 35 strikeouts and has allowed just three runs in 29 2/3 innings in Gwinnett and twice spent time with the Braves last year.