BOSTON -- Daniel Nava and Jarrod Saltalamacchia have been out of the starting lineup more often than not in the World Series, but Farrell said the two have been understanding of their reduced playing time.
"That's the tough thing," said Farrell, "when you see what a guy has done throughout the course of the year and has earned the right to be on the field. And yet, for specific reasons, you see a way to attack a matchup in a certain way . . .
"With [David] Ross [at catcher], he's given us a spark offensively and [Saltalamacchia] might not like [being on the bench], which we respect. I wouldn't want him to like it. But it's also a different time of the year and that sense of urgency we talked about . . . is here now. We find ourselves in a position to make decisions that sometimes aren't the most popular. You do what you think is the best and right thing in the moment."
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Mike Napoli was back in the lineup after being on the bench with no DH in St. Louis, hitting cleanup, but Farrell wasn't concerned about the slugger losing his rhythm.
"My thought is rhythm will be overcome by adrenaline,'' said Farrell.
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Farrell said Game 5 starter Jon Lester would be available in Game 7 if necessary.
Game 4 starter Clay Buchholz, meanwhile, was "possibly" available for Game 6 and definitely available for Game 7.
Farrell stressed that lefty Felix Doubront wouldn't be held back for Game 7; if he's needed in Game 6, he'd be called upon. Doubront pitched 4 2/3 innings in Games 3 and 4, but wasn't used in Game 5. That, combined with the off-day Tuesday, meant he was ready to go in Game 6, even for multiple innings.
"I would expect him to be available for that," said Farrell, who added that the usage would "ideally [be in] a clean inning. What Felix has done has been a huge lift for us. And the fact that he hasn't pitched a whole lot out of the bullpen and to throw consecutive days as he did, it's been a lift."
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Shortstop Stephen Drew has struggled mightily this postseason, batting .080 (4-for-50) with 19 strikeouts. In five World Series games he is batting .067, going 1-for-15, with seven strikeouts. But his glove has kept him in the lineup.
Teammates Shane Victorino and Dustin Pedroia respect the way Drew has been able to separate his defense from his offense.
“Stephen's been, defensively he's been unbelievable,” Pedroia said. “And then I know the numbers say what they are offensively. But he's had at‑bats that have changed the games for us. Even [in the seventh inning of Game 5], his walk (prior to David Ross' RBI double) sets up everything.
“He's a baseball player. He doesn't take anything out there with him. If he strikes out, he's still out there trying to make a great play to get us back in and score some runs. He does the little things that make our team go. And you guys don't see that as much as we do. But we see it every day. And he's a huge part of this whole thing.”
Maureen Mullen contributed to this report.