Getting healthier in the outfield

The injury-ravaged outfield of the Red Sox could get a reinforcement as early as Monday, assuming Ryan Sweeney comes off the disabled list the first day he is eligible. Sweeney suffered a mild concussion last week.

“Hit, run, throw, field — all baseball activities to get ready to see if he’s going to be activated for tomorrow,” manager Bobby Valentine said of Sweeney’s Sunday morning activites. “He’s doing it as we speak.”

Sweeney was idled for a few days as he let the concussion symptoms subside.

“It’s just getting that baseball feeling back now,” Sweeney said.

Darnell McDonald will likely come back on Tuesday as he is over the nagging oblique injury that kept him sidelined. McDonald will play at Pawtucket Sunday and Monday. He opened his rehab there Friday and took a day off on Saturday.


I’m glad Sweeney is back in the OF. Also glad Lin held down the fort and got some playing time to show what he can do– he played some nice OF! I do hope Jacoby can return before too long! With Dustin out of the lineup for a while, we can still use all the help we can get! GO SOX!

Frankly, I’m not unhappy to see the Sox keep Darnell McDonald down on a rehab assignment. I know he’s well liked and is a real team player, but his hitting has left something to be desired for quite some time. I wonder who will be sent down/released — Nava (who is just doing a great job at the plate), Middlebrooks, Marlon Byrd, who they would owe perhaps $5-6 Mil. to, or Scott Podsednik, who sure has made a nice initial impression. While it will be nice to get some of the injured players back, there are going to be some hard roster decisions to be made.

The decisions will only get harder when the Sox contemplate returning Dice-K, Aaron Cook or Andrew Bailey to the 25 man roster. Who goes down/gets released? Scott Atchison who has a 0.90 ERA? Vincente Padilla, who has been logging lots of quality innings of late, or any of the rest of that bullpen, which has been working its A$# off of late. Speaking of unexpected pitching contributions, its the Sox 4th and 5th starters who now each have 5 wins, leaving them only behind Yu Darvish (7) and 10 or so other AL pitchers with 6. Now I know pitching wins isn’t everything (after all, Lackey had 12 last year with one of the very highest ERA’s in the bigs). However, they are contributing, particularly Prince Felix, who has to be the biggest pleasant surprise coming out of Spring Training.

In the things seem different to me category, I see a different style of management on the field. Most of you who have read my prior posts are well aware how big a Tito fan I was and remain, and nothing I say here is intended to be a criticism of Tito. However, Bobby V. is quicker to replace pitchers. Hopefully, that won’t burn this bullpen out. More significantly was Bobby’s pinch-hitting with Salty Saturday night. I don’t think Tito would have ever done that, thereby depriving himself of a back-up catcher, even that late in the game. Bobby V. took that chance and was well rewarded for his managerial effort.

Don’t look now, but the Sox are above .500, 3 1/2 games out of the AL East lead, have a ton of injured players closer to returning, and a starting rotation which is beginning to look as strong as I have always felt them to be….Not to mention all of the June games vs. NL teams, where they have feasted in the recent past.

Sweeney suffered a mild concussion last week.

Sweeney was idled for a few days as he let the concussion symptoms subside.

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