Cherington prefers helping pen from within

SEATTLE -- With Andrew Miller out for the season and the trade deadline three weeks away, one would expect Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington will be burning up the phone lines in an effort to bolster the bullpen.

But Cherington indicated on Monday that his preference would be to fill the void from within.

"The most efficient way to do it would be to ignore [the trade market] completely." Cherington told reporters before Monday night's game. "But then you run the risk of not having enough guys out there. We have to strike the right balance in the middle. ... I do think it lends to the point that if you can find solutions internally, that's always the better way to go.

"We've got to have an open mind," Cherington said. "As I said before, the players and the staff have done a great job putting us in this position working so hard, so we have an obligation to help them if we can. Losing Andrew is not something we were planning on. We'll have to react and try to find solutions."

One short-term option that can be ruled out is veteran left-hander Ryan Rowland-Smith, who has posted a 1.03 ERA in 43 2/3 innings for Pawtucket but is on the disabled list after undergoing an appendectomy. Cherington said Rowland-Smith won't be available until "later in July."

But Cherington said it wasn't mandatory to replace the left-handed Miller with another lefty.

"I don't know if it's as important whether it's left or right," Cherington said. "We need good pitchers."