7/20/09 Injuries and contingencies

Hallelujah, Jed Lowrie is back! Lowrie appears to be healthy, but as the Sox are wont to do, they will bring him along cautiously, and platoon him with Nick Green for a while. Along with that move, Julio Lugo has been DFA’d to make room on the roster. Whether he is released or traded, the Red Sox will be eating the rest of his contract. Give Theo some credit for admitting his mistake in signing Lugo to an inflated 4-year deal.

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7/11/09 Injury update: Lowell, Lowrie, Dice-K

Mike Lowell says he’s ready to go, and that’s good news for the Sox. We should get an idea pretty quickly about how his hip will hold up after the Synvisc treatment. Apparently the rest not only helped him be more agile, but allowed him to tag the ball a bit harder than he has recently. Again, good news.

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June 2009 wrap

The Red Sox had their best month of 2009 in June, going 18-8 and grabbing first place in the AL East. Inter-league play was good to us, as usual, and we finished 11-7 against the senior circuit. You would think that a 49-32 record would be pretty safe, but the Yankees are right there, and the Rays and Jays are still lurking around as well. Let’s take a quick look back and see what was good and bad this month:

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Lowell mending, Dice-K taking it slow, Lowrie’s knee a problem

Mike Lowell says he feels better after being placed on the DL last week, and he will be hitting off of a tee starting today. Jeff Bailey was recalled in Lowell’s absence, but he may now go on the DL as well, probably opening the door for Chris Carter to see some time. Carter has been struggling since being sent back to Pawtucket back in April.

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Linkage: Milestones all around, minor leaguers recognized

Congratulations to these Red Sox, who achieved notable milestones this past week:

In case you missed it, here is the video of Nick Green’s narrow escape from a flying broken bat last week. My heart almost stopped during this play, thinking, “oh no, this means we have to play Julio Lugo!”

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More Dice-K madness, Papi out of the woods?

Daisuke Matsuzaka has been bad, horrible, even in 2009. Everyone’s piling on now, demanding he be traded (his no-trade clause be damned). But he’s been playing hurt, and what he’s done the past two years is a cache that should teach us better. Don’t give up too early on a guy that’s done nothing but produce, despite your lack of excitement over him.

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Dice-K hits the DL, Sox don’t miss a beat

I’ve been saying for some time now that Daisuke Matsuzaka could return to the DL, and yesterday he finally did. MRIs showed “weakness” in his throwing shoulder. After a string of disappointing starts with no clear explanation for his poor performance, it was finally time for Matsuzaka to bow out for a while. The Sox say it could be quite a while, but with John Smoltz coming into the rotation this week, that doesn’t seem to matter much. He should take the time off, right himself, and then rejoin the rotation in August for the stretch run. For those who think he doesn’t belong there- go look at the last two seasons and stop being silly.

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Sox trade Ambres, Lowrie may return early

The Red Sox traded outfielder Chip Ambres to the New York Mets for a PTBNL yesterday. Ambres was hitting .259/.335/.368 at Pawtucket at the time of the trade. This is just a depth move, and it frees up some outfield space at Triple-A, which is already crowded with the likes of Zach Daeges, Chris Carter and recently promoted Aaron Bates.

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Links: Some more Papi reading and trade rumors analysis

The David Ortiz conundrum is reaching national status. His eyes checked out, so there’s not many reasons left for his decline. Either he’s way older than we thought, or there’s something wrong with his head. Last night’s long homer and the seven game hitting streak notwithstanding, we still have to have some doubt as to when and how much Papi will rebound. Here’s one exit strategy, given by Craig Calcaterra at THT.

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Pedey out with groin strain

Dustin Pedroia, last year’s MVP, left yesterday’s game with a groin strain. That leaves Nick Green starting at second base and Julio Lugo at shortstop, not exactly an inspiring combination. It shouldn’t keep Pedey off the field more than a couple of days, but combine that with Kevin Youkilis’ injury, and suddenly you’ve taken a lot of firepower out of that lineup and the defense on the right side of the diamond suffers tremendously. The pitching will have to do it tonight if we want to win.

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