The Red Sox lefty cell has a Cowboy 19, scratched since early Sunday.

CHICAGO (AP) – Boston S Chris Cell has once again had a positive experience for the Cowboys 19, leaving the left-hander behind while the Red Sox fight for positioning in the crowded AL playoffs.

The sale against the AL Central Leading White Sox was scheduled to begin in Chicago on Sunday. The seven-time All-Star had a light contest with COVID-19 in January that forced him to quarantine for two weeks.

“At this point, nothing surprises me, to be honest with you,” manager Alex Cora said Friday. “On a daily basis, we go through only one process and we only hope for good news. Here we are.”

The Red Sox have placed 17 players on the Cowboys-19 injury list since August 3, including fielders Xander Bogerts and Christian Arvio and pitchers Nick Pewita, Matt Barnes and Martin Perez.

The Bogarts were reinstated on Friday and returned to the starting lineup against the White Sox. Left-hander Darwin Hernandez was activated from the 10-day injury list after being separated from right-sided strain, and right-handed Caleb Ort was promoted from Triple-A Worcester.

The Red Sox also included infielder Jonathan Araz in the Cowboys 19 list, and left-hander Austin Davis went on maternity leave. The move with Araúz is precautionary. He has some symptoms, but he has tested negative several times, according to the team.

The 32-year-old Cell missed Tommy John’s surgery last season. Since returning on August 14, he is 3-0 with a 2.52 ERA.

“It’s unfortunate, but he’ll be back,” Kora said. “He feels good. He actually feels great, and hopefully he can come back soon after his X days.”

The cell will likely have to stay away from the team for at least 10 days, although Major League Baseball has been exempted by its medical experts on the grounds that it is not contagious.

The long absence for the left would be a major blow to the Red Sox, who entered the AL’s first wild card spot on Friday with a one-game lead over the New York Yankees. Toronto was another half-game as he tried to outscore his AL Eastern rivals for another wild card.

“It’s our reality and we have to continue,” Kora said.

Cora said the Pevita is feeling good, and is an option when it takes the place of the cell on Sunday. Right-hander Connor Seabold is in the team’s taxi squad for his road trip and could start his big league this weekend.

Perez was in Worcester on Friday, and Cora said he planned to throw a ballpark session and then pitch in a game on Sunday.

Although Boston has used COVID-19 IL over and over again, it seemed like it was taking a turn for the worse before a positive cell test. Left-hander Josh Taylor was reinstated on Monday, and position players Kiki Hernandez and Danny Santana returned to the active roster on Tuesday.


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