Red Sox

Hot Stove Lunch: Carson Smith back with Red Sox on minor league deal

(Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports)

Well, who expected this?

Carson Smith will be back with the Red Sox in spring training, signed to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league camp.

That the Red Sox would be on the lookout for inexpensive bullpen help is not a surprise. That's been their M.O. for the offseason: stockpiling cheap options as they keep an eye on their ever-expanding payroll.

But the fact that Smith is back is something few saw coming.