With Victor Martinez and Jason Varitek set at the major league level and Dusty Brown along with Mark Wagner in reserve, the Red Sox cleared a 40-man spot by releasing catcher George Kottaras.
Kottaras was out of options, so he would have had to pass through waivers, which may have been possible. If so, he’d have required playing time in Triple-A that should go to Wagner/Brown. In addition, if he was claimed, the team would be in the same situation right now, so why not get the additional 40-man spot to protect an additional Rule 5 eligible player?
For more of a breakdown on who is eligible and who could be protected, check out the SoxProspects blog.