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June 7, 2008
Long Duty for Lopez
Javier Lopez, the side-arming left-hander who tends to have appearances that last only one or two batters, worked a career-long three innings Friday night with the Red Sox losing by a large margin.
It was the longest outing of Lopez's four-year big-league career. He said he had thrown three innings for Pawtucket in a game in Buffalo last year, and had done it another time in the minors in 2005.
"I'm a little sore," said Lopez.
Lopez, aware of the circumstances of the game, was not surprised that manager Terry Francona kept him in for three innings in a game that had long since been decided.
"I was pretty pitch-efficient (37) so I think that's why he kept me in there and it saved the other guys in the bullpen because we've been getting a lot of work lately," said Lopez. "It's something they told me I'd be doing, getting anywhere from one out to five outs. They didn't talk about nine, but that was fine. We saved some other guys so that's a positive."
-- Steven Krasner
Posted by Steven Krasner at 1:39 PM | Permalink
Pregame Notes, June 7
-- Third baseman Mike Lowell, who is only 2 for 15 on the homestand, is out of the starting lineup. Kevin Youkilis is starting at third and Sean Casey, who was 3 for 4 Friday night, is starting at first base.
-- Daisuke Matsuzaka threw on flat ground without any issue. Dice-K hasn't pitched since leaving his May 27 start in Seattle after four innings because of a right rotator cuff strain. Manager Terry Francona said he wasn't sure if Matsuzaka will head out on a rehab assignment when he has progressed to that point. Dice-K is eligible to come off the disabled list on Thursday, but it doesn't seem likely he'll be ready.
-- Jacoby Ellsbury (right wrist) still is out of the starting lineup, but Francona said Tuesday night might be a realistic return date for the fleet outfielder.
-- Manny Ramirez's right hamstring/knee still is sore, but he's well enough to serve as the Sox' designated hitter today.
-- Steven Krasner
Posted by Steven Krasner at 1:33 PM | Permalink
Slumping Pedroia Rested
By STEVEN KRASNER
Journal Sports Writer
BOSTON -- Slumping Dustin Pedroia is being given a day off from the starting lineup, replaced at second base by Alex Cora.
And while manager Terry Francona did not want to term it as a "mental health" day for Pedroia, his feisty infielder hasn't been able to buy a hit over the last two weeks and the frustration is building..
Pedroia, last year's American League Rookie of the Year, is batting a mere .127 (7 for 55) over his last 14 games, plunging his average from .304 to .266, the lowest it has been since he was at .271 on April 12.
Pedroia's troubles have been numerous -- chasing bad pitches, hitting too many balls in the air, the victim of borderline umpire's calls that have put him behind in the count. He also has been a victim of bad luck.
For instance, last Wednesday night, Pedroia thought he had a homer on a slicing drive that replays seemed to indicate went past the Pesky Pole on the "fair" side of the pole. But the ball was called foul.
On Thursday night, Pedroia was robbed of extra bases on a diving catch by Tampa Bay center fielder B.J. Upton. And on Friday night, Pedroia almost had an infield single but at the last moment Seattle third baseman Adrian Beltre elected not to try to pick up his weak grounder, and it rolled just foul past the bag.
This is the second day off for Pedroia in a week. He sat out last Monday's game in Baltimore, which was the first game all season in which he did not at least make an appearance.
Posted by Steven Krasner at 1:16 PM | Permalink
Starting Lineups, June 7
-- Steven Krasner
Posted by Steven Krasner at 1:12 PM | Permalink