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What’s new with the Red Sox: Wednesday

03.04.10 at 7:53 am ET
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FORT MYERS, Fla. — “Nothing fancy, just the facts.”

After a pair of exhibition games — one against Northeastern, and another against Boston College — the Sox are now 14 innings, 47 players and 21 runs of offense into their exhibition season. As one might guess, the return to games meant of wealth of knowledge to be gleaned:

Casey Kelly threw a 1-2-3 scoreless inning in 10 pitches. His fastball was 90-92 mph, and he recorded a pair of strikeouts on his changeup. Interestingly, Kelly learned the change just one year ago in spring training. It is now his best off-speed pitch. For much more on Kelly, click here.

Boof Bonser sounded relieved after delivering a scoreless inning in the nightcap against BC. While his fastball sat at 88-91 mph, he was enthusiastic about the way that his shoulder responded to its first game test since arthroscopic surgery late last February. For more on Bonser, click here.

–Both Bonser and Kelly are slated to pitch next on Sunday in Sarasota against the Orioles.

–To some, the image of Tim Wakefield working with 18-year-old Eri Yoshida of Japan on her knuckleball was an interesting human interest story. To Wakefield, it was far more than that, since the moment offered an echo of when his work with a pair of coaches for a women’s professional baseball team in Fort Myers helped to save his career. Of course, it helped Wakefield quite a bit that the coaches of the Colorado Silver Bullets happened to be Phil and Joe Niekro. For more, click here.

Lou Merloni sat down with Jonathan Papelbon to review the closer’s blown save in Game 3 of the Divison Series. In that inning, Papelbon’s inability to use his split made him vulnerable. Merloni suggests that Papelbon’s split is looking significantly improved this spring.

–The Sox enjoyed some impressive offensive performances on Wednesday, with David Ortiz and Luis Exposito showing offensive promise in the first game, and Jose Iglesias suggesting that he lived a dream by entering the night game and jumping on a first pitch fastball for a three-run double. Of course, no one’s day at the plate was more discussed than that of Sox coach Ino Guerrero.

–Ortiz visited with the Dennis & Callahan Show, where he talked about his desire to finish his career with the Red Sox. For a transcript, click here.

–While Bonser’s shoulder is fine, he’s been unable to get rid of blisters on his right index finger. He’s figured out a means of treating the issue (thanks to Super Glue), though he’s now also found an expert with whom he can consult on blister treatment in teammate Josh Beckett.

“As soon as he found out I had a finger problem, he was in my ear,” said Bonser. “I was like, great – I know the method of bad fingers, I guess you could say.”

Mike Lowell got on the field to take his first full live batting practice session of the spring. (Video here.) Even so, the Sox do not yet have a timetable for when he will be ready to play in games.

Daisuke Matsuzaka had another day of long toss from more than 180 feet, and he is now set to throw his first bullpen session of the spring on Friday. The Sox are confident that they took exactly the right precautions in working with the pitcher to resolve the mild mid-upper back strain that he encountered at the start of spring training.

J.D. Drew and Mike Cameron are both scheduled to play in their first games of the spring on Friday.

Clay Buchholz threw 36 pitches in a two-inning simulated game at the minor league complex.

–Outfielder Che-Hsuan Lin, who recorded a pair of hits against Northeastern, said that he was not the Taiwanese national sprinting champion in high school, but instead a regional champion. He ran the 100 meters in 11 seconds.

Gaby Hernandez, who was designated for assignment on Monday to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for Casey Fein, was claimed on waivers by the Royals. Hernandez spent exactly three weeks on the Sox’ roster after the team claimed him off of waivers from the Mariners.

–Reliever Jorge Sosa arrived in camp with the Red Sox after his delay for visa issues was resolved. Sosa said that his delay was a byproduct of his 50-game suspension for a positive test for amphetamines while in the minors in 2008.

–Manager Terry Francona saw the reports that Manny Ramirez has agreed to make the trip across the Pacific for the Dodgers’ three-game exhibition series in Taiwan. Asked the likelihood that Ramirez actually makes the trip, Francona mused, “I’m going with the under.”

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