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Notes: Doubront to pitch, Buchholz to DL

07.05.10 at 6:30 pm ET
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ST. PETERSBURG — Left-hander Felix Doubront will start on Tuesday against the Rays in Tampa Bay, the Red Sox confirmed.

The 22-year-old made a fill-in start for the Red Sox in June, picking up a win in his big league debut against the Dodgers while allowing five runs (three earned) in five innings. He is 7-2 with a 2.45 ERA in the minors this year, including 3-2 with a 2.36 ERA this year for Triple-A Pawtucket. He pitched twice against the Tampa Bay Rays in spring training, recording five shutout innings against Tampa Bay.

‘€œI’€™ve been working my regular five-day routine,’€ Doubront said. ‘€œI feel more confident now.’€

After witnessing Doubront’€™s initial big league start, the Red Sox aren’€™t hesitant in putting the pitcher out against Tampa Bay Tuesday.

‘€œWhat we really like about him is his poise,’€ Red Sox manager Terry Francona said the lefty, ‘€œalong with he’€™s got a fastball he’€™s not afraid to use. Sometimes with young pitchers that’€™s a difficult thing to get across. Use your fastball regardless how good major league hitters are. You’€™ve got to use your fastball. He’€™s seemed to understand that from the first day of major league camp two years ago. He’€™s got a pretty good changeup. The breaking ball isn’€™t the finished product but he competes, hold runners ‘€¦ I don’€™t think anybody is happy with Buchholz going on the DL, but on the flip side it’€™s kind of exciting to see how he does.’€

- Clay Buchholz will be placed on the 15-day disabled list, with an eye of bringing him back into the starting rotation shortly after the All-Star break.

‘€œWe just weren’€™t comfortable with the running part,’€ Francona said of Buchholz, who is recovering from a left hamstring injury and was put through some drills at Tropicana Field Monday. ‘€œWhen he was trying to run he was still feeling it. There was no reason for us to rush into it so we just kept letting it go and see if he did get better. But there was no way we were going to let this kid pitch unless he was perfect.’€

Francona notes that the Red Sox have mapped out three different scenarios for the starting rotation immediately after the All-Star break. Jon Lester, who may get the start for the American League team, will most likely be slotted toward the end of the rotation once the team comes back from the break.

John Lackey is the only Red Sox starting pitcher who has taken every start this season. ‘€œLack’€™s stuff is getting better, which is a good sign,’€ Francona said.

- Josh Beckett will head down to Sarasota Tuesday morning to make a rehab assignment start in a Gulf Coast League game. If weather presents a problem the pitcher will head back up to Tropicana Field with some of the GCL players to participate in a simulated game.

‘€œHe looks pretty good,’€ Francona said of Beckett, who is expected to throw in the vicinity of 55 pitches Tuesday. ‘€œThe other day he was letting it go pretty good. The command is going to take a little while , but he was letting it go pretty good. You can tell he feels good.

‘€œWhen he’€™s had problems pitching, the times he’€™s been on the borderline thinking about ‘€˜Am I OK?’€™ he’€™s had a hard time. When he goes out there and knows that he’€™s OK then he can go and everything is fine. I can see the difference in the demeanor.’€

Francona said that he has routinely put the likes of Darnell McDonald, Daniel Nava, and Eric Patterson in the Sox’€™ lineup’€™s No. 2 spot in large part to keep consistency throughout the rest of the batting order.

- The Red Sox manager noted how important the presence of David Ortiz, both on the field and in the clubhouse, has meant to the recent success of the team.

‘€œIt’€™s huge, and I don’€™t think we’€™re really shy about saying that,’€ Francona noted. ‘€œWhen you have a guy who is your everyday DH he’€™s got to hit. He has to be that presence, and he’€™s back to being that presence.’€

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