When the Boston Red Sox announced their non-roster invitees to their major league spring training camp Saturday, outfielder Bryce Brentz’s name was noticeably missing.
There’s a good reason.
Brentz, 24, who played most of last season in Portland, shot himself in the leg three weeks ago while cleaning a handgun.
It wasn’t a serious injury. The bullet went through his left leg.
“It’s a minor setback, really,” Brentz told the Boston Globe. “I was very fortunate. I understand it could have been a lot worse.”
Brentz said he’s been jogging and hitting at the spring training facility for two weeks.
On his Twitter account, Brentz wrote: “Wanna thank everyone for the concerns and prayers. I return to full practice Monday and looking forward to a great 2013 season.”
While Brentz said he will be ready for spring training this week, General Manager Ben Cherington told reporters that Brentz wasn’t ready and might not play in spring training games until the end of March.
Brentz batted .291 with 17 home runs for the Sea Dogs last year before a late-season promotion to Triple-A Pawtucket. He’s expected to return to Pawtucket, with a possible call-up to Boston later in the year.
Before the accident, Brentz figured to be invited to the major league spring training camp. The camp is open to members of Boston’s 40-man roster, plus non-roster invitees.
Of the 19 non-roster invitees, six played in Portland last year — pitchers Chris Hernandez and Chris Carpenter, infielder Xander Bogaerts, and outfielders Jackie Bradley Jr., Jeremy Hazelbaker and Juan Carlos Linares.
Carpenter, obtained from the Cubs in the Theo Epstein compensation deal, made a rehab appearance at Hadlock Field. Hernandez, Hazelbaker and Linares began the year with Portland and landed in Pawtucket.
Bogaerts and Bradley joined the Sea Dogs mid-year and are expected to begin this season in Portland.
Also among the invitees are first baseman Lyle Overbay and outfielder Ryan Sweeney.
Overbay, 36, is a 12-year veteran of the major leagues who played for Arizona and Atlanta last year. He signed a minor-league contract but is expected to be given a good look as a backup to Mike Napoli at first base.
Sweeney, 27, played for the Red Sox last year after being obtained from Oakland in the Josh Reddick trade. Injuries limited him to 63 games. Boston didn’t offer him salary arbitration, but later signed him to a minor-league contract.
According to mlb.com, Overbay and Sweeney have out clauses in their contracts if they are not added to the 40-man roster by the end of March.
Staff Writer Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or: