Red Sox pregame notes: Shane Victorino ready to play, Franklin Morales could start Wednesday
|06.08.13 at 11:55 am ET|
Shane Victorino is ready to start for the Red Sox Saturday, Sox manager John Farrell said before the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader with the Angels. Farrell said Victorino is no longer feeling the tightness in his hamstring that has sidelined him since May 20, and while he won’t play the first game, he’ll be available to come off the DL for the second.
“We’re still balancing Jacoby [Ellsbury]’s availability, not only day-to-day, but with two games in one day, we’ve got to try to balance that out,” Farrell said. “With a left-hander going tonight, [C.J.] Wilson, there’s a scenario that has Shane in center field tonight.”
Victorino made just one rehab start with Triple-A Pawtucket before returning, as Pawtucket was rained out on Friday. With Ellsbury only recently returned from stiffness in his groin that held him out for five games, Farrell said he’ll try to balance the two outfielders’ playing time.
“Would have liked [Victorino] to get another game at least, but the way he swung the bat, the way he ran the bases, there were no issues,” Farrell said. “Timing at the plate was good. Again, we’re managing another health situation here, so with all things factored in, he’s available for tonight.”
Victorino was hitting .283/.343/.362 at the time of his injury. In his only rehab start, he went 2-for-4 with a home run and a single. Farrell said he won’t hesitate to play him in center field, as opposed to possibly starting him in right, because Victorino is having no issues running.
– Farrell said Franklin Morales is a “definite candidate” to make a start for the Sox next Wednesday, when they’ll need a starting pitcher.
Morales has made one major-league start this year, throwing 5 innings, striking out two, walking two and allowing two runs in a 9-2 win over Philadelphia on May 30.
– He didn’t get to manage a game on Friday, but Farrell did get to see his third and youngest son, Luke, drafted by the Royals in the sixth round. Luke pitched four years at Northwestern University, overcoming some medical issues: he twice had a benign tumor removed from his brain, in 2009 and 2011.
“An exciting day. Proud of him for what he’s been able to come back from, what he’s accomplished, and excited for his next chapter in baseball,” Farrell said. “I know he’s excited to join the Royals.”
Farrell said that he and his family had decided it was better for Luke to pursue his baseball career in a different organization than the one for which his father works. Farrell’s oldest son, Jeremy, was drafted by the Rockies in 2005, and his middle son, Shane, pitches for Marshall University.
“There were discussions all about that, and I think we’re, as a family, all in agreement for him to blaze his own trail as the other two have, and like I said, we’re proud of him,” Farrell said.
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