Lowell works out at first

For the second time in three days, Mike Lowell, a career third baseman, spent time at first base during Boston’s workouts.

Lowell is trying to gain comfort at first this spring, which could help his market value and also make him more viable to the Red Sox if he stays with the club.

Manager Terry Francona said that Lowell seemed to make the transition to the other side of the diamond “pretty good”. Here he is taking a grounder down the line, in a photo by Brita Meng Outzen.
lowellfirst.JPG
“For everybody, it’s different,” Francona said. “From my standpoint, you’re seeing the ball off the bat from a completely different angle. It’s like left field, right field. I think as you get comfortable, if you can play third, you’re going to be able to catch the ball at first. But when it’s not to you at third, you can stand there. When it’s not hit to you at first, you better get to first. It’s just different real estate. But once you get comfortable over there, then the natural instincts take over.”

The Red Sox managed to get all their work in on Saturday, despite a downpour that started almost immediately when they came off the field.

“Everything, which was very fortunate,” Francona said. “Right when Pap took the mound, the groundskeeper came out and said, ‘you’ve got 10 more minutes’ which would have been a little different. But no, we got everything in. It wasn’t the best day ever but we got everything in. Guys got their throwing in, guys got their hitting and we’re OK.”

Daisuke Matsuzaka continues to climb back to full health in his recovery from a minor back injury.

“Dice-K today, he threw off the mound — just tossed off the mound. Today was kind of his down day because tomorrow is going to be 150 feet,” Francona said. “But he did it off the mound so he could at least be at that angle. He wasn’t throwing hard but just so he could get the feel of that angle because you can’t do that off the flatground. Tomorrow will be a pretty aggressive day, probably out to 140 or 150.”

Matuzaka should have a full-out bullpen session by early next week, perhaps Tuesday.

In case you missed it, the here is how the pitching lines up for the exhibition games.

Wednesday vs. Northeastern and Boston College — Casey Kelly and Boof Bonser.

Thursday at home vs. the Twins. Josh Beckett; Friday at the Twins complex. Jon Lester, piggybacked by Tim Wakefield. Saturday split squad at home vs. the Twins. John Lackey. Saturday on the road split squad. Felix Doubront; Sunday at Sarasota vs. the Orioles. Clay Buchholz.

12 Comments

You know, If you or I, in a job missed 1/4-1/3 of the days that Dice K and JD have missed over the past couple of years, we’d have had a pink slip handed to us LONG AGO!!!!
On that note, I go bad news this last Tuesday… I got LAID OFF!!!
Oh well, me and about another million people. And now I’m hearing that is taking an average of 12-20 weeks to receive unemployment compensation benefits.. Hell, thats somewhere between May and July!!! I don’t care what it is, I’ll be back to work before that happens… I can’t sit at home.. Just since Tuesday you can eat off of my floors and all my cabinets are re-organized and every piece of clothing in this house has been washed, folded and put away.. David even has all of his business shirts ironed!!! (He shouldn’t getto used to that!!)

Oh, Ellen, I’m so sorry to hear that, but I’m glad to hear that you aren’t letting it keep you too far down like many other people would. I really admire your attitude about this. Keep your chin up and keep that spirit alive, and good things will happen! Hope everything works out soon!

Thank you Travis.. You’ll find out just what a family we have here. We always try to be there for each other nad you’re fitting in very nicely. Thanks!!!

I’m REALLY sorry to hear that, Ellen. Thinking and praying for you, esp. that your back holds up OK, whatever job you take. Hope we can hear good news on that front quickly! Did you iron David’s 34 jersey? ;) Keep your chin up, Ellen! Tell Trixie to keep going, also! :)

Sorry to hear about the job Ellen. Hopefully you’ll be back to work soon. Good luck!!!
Tuesday was not a good day, Ellen. First you lose your job, then my little cat that I’ve had for 7 years got eaten by a coyote on Tuesday. The coyotes have been really aggressive this winter and they managed to catch Max, who had evaded them for 7 years. I miss him. He was a great little cat, but my next one will have to stay inside. “Wolves at the door, fox in the hen-house”

Sorry about your cat, Max, Arnie!
I am happy that Mike is willing to take reps at 1B, but I don’t see Youk moving off that base. Keep up the great work, Mike! GO SOX!

A little raitonailty lifts the quality of the debate here. Thanks for contributing!

Brita Meng Outzen has a very cool name and takes a great photograph. Way to go, Brita!!

I hope Mike Lowell can find a home in Boston this year, whether at third, first , DH, or a combo of all 3.. Go Mike!!!

Hey all, admittedly I am sort of a negative optimist :) (or a glass half-empty guy who in spite of what he see, thinks its already full).

However, I am really starting to get unusually optimistic for this year: (1) Nearly everyone of our guys have “something to prove” this year, including just about of our pitchers and Ortiz, and (2) especially Dice-K and Ortiz, which when combined with pitching reclamation projects like Smoltz and Pennylead (that we don’t have this year) lead to early wear on our bullpen, which one would think will not happen this year. Then (3) there are no negative/weak links like Lugo, or shortstop in general, bring the team down, and the bench players seem stronger this year as well (Baldeli and bench were ok at best).

The only net negative at all is the absence of Bay’s bat, which we all have commented on at length, but Ortiz has to have a better year, and I think he has a way of lifting the whole team when he plays well anyway. And if Beltre can’t hit at all, we still have Lowell (for a while) — and if Cameron can’t hit, we got a hungry bench with some talent waiting for their chance.

That combined with the sour exit in the first round last year, and mostly the fact that DiceK and Ortiz have to be on very strong agenda’s this year — and everything else be equal or better….. we might make some noise this year.

Ellen, just saw your post on your job — hope things turn around for you very quickly (or a soon as you prefer) :)

Ellen – I’ll keep you in my thoughts and prayers that you will find a job soon!

I know this is a baseball blog….but GO US MEN’S HOCKEY TEAM!!!! Beat Canada! USA!!! USA!!!!

That is all! Can not WAIT to see the Red Sox game Wednesday night! The game against BC will be on NESN!! YAY!!!

NEW THREAD!

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