Game Day Notes: Iglesias leaves with arm injury

Game Day Notes: Iglesias leaves with arm injury
April 5, 2013, 8:30 pm
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(USA Today Sports)

TORONTO -- Jose Iglesias was hit in the right forearm by a pitch in the top of the second inning Friday night and came out of the game two innings later.    

Afterwards, manager John Farrell said Iglesias "got hit underneath the forearm there. He tightened up over the next couple of innings. He's day-to-day. It's a right tricep contusion. We'll check him [Saturday] morning when he comes in.''

Iglesias stayed in the game long enough to make a brilliant play in the hole on a grounder by Melky Cabrera in the bottom of the third. Ranging to his left, Iglesias scooped the ball and, moving away from second, still managed to throw to second baseman Dustin Pedroia to get a forceout on the speedy Jose Reyes.    

But Iglesias seemed to be holding the arm gingerly after the play, and when his spot in the lineup came up in the top of the next inning, Pedro Ciriaco pinch-hit for him and remained in the game.    

Farrell said the throw from the hole -- which Iglesias sort of sidearmed out of necessity, given his body position -- wasn't a factor in making the arm worse.    

"It was more about when he raised his arm up above his shoulder,'' said Farrell. "The throw he made was a heck of a play to begin with, but you could see some of the throws in between innings starting to lose some of their normal carry, so . . . we got him out of there.''

Heading into Friday night, Ciriaco was one of two position players -- first baseman/DH Mike Carp was the other -- who had yet to see any action through the first three games.    

Ciriaco showed he hadn't missed a beat, singling in the fourth to drive in Shane Victorino from second. Later, he doubled to open the sixth.

Before the game, Farrell said he would like to find a way to get both Ciriaco and Carp on the field during the weekend series.    

"I'd like to get them in as soon as possible,'' said Farrell, "but we've can't deny that Jose (Iglesias) has done an excellent job at short. So game situation will probably dictate that. But, yeah, I'd like to get those two guys in as soon as we could.''    

Clearly, however, having Ciriaco pressed into duty because of an injury was not what Farrell and the Red Sox had in mind.

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The charge for Felix Doubront this season is to routinely get deeper into games by limiting his pitch count. On that score, Doubront stumbled Friday night, failing to get an out in the sixth on 90 pitches before needing help from the bullpen.    

But Farrell was otherwise pleased with what he saw from his lefty starter.    

"I thought tonight, he had his best stuff of the year,'' said the manager. "He was downhill consistently, he had an outstanding changeup, he was powerful. He threw more strikes, particularly in the early going, than we saw in spring training. I think it was a good step forward for him.''    

"I felt good,'' said Doubront. "[I made] a couple of mistakes, a couple of base hits on mistakes. But I felt very good. Arm feels good, my body feels good. I'm looking forward to my next outing.''    

Doubront found a positive in limiting the damage at times. He used a double play in the first to wiggle out of a first-and-third jam, and stranded a runner at second with just one out in the second.    

"I did pretty well with men in scoring position,'' said Doubront. "What hurt me was a (a few bloop hits) and trying to work a little bit quicker. But like I said, it's the first game and I'm looking forward to the second one.''

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Last season, reliever Junichi Tazawa allowed just one homer all season, and didn't allow any of his final 24 appearances.    

On Friday night, he picked a bad time for that homerless streak to end.    

The Sox were clinging to a 4-3 lead in the seventh when Tazawa took over, following countryman Koji Uehaha to the mound as the second Red Sox reliever out of the bullpen.    

After Tazawa retired Maicer Izturis on a fly out for the first out, Blue Jays shortstop Jose Reyes, who had already collected three hits off starter Felix Doubront, took Tazawa out with a game-tying solo homer to right.    

"The split-finger on a 1-and-0 pitch just didn't get quite the depth and stayed in the middle (of the plate),'' lamented John Farrell. "(Reyes) is a pretty electric looking player, for sure.''    

Tazawa later allowed a two-out triple to Melky Cabrera, but kept him stranded there when he retired Edwin Encarnacion on a flyout to center.
     
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Shortstop Stephen Drew was scheduled for four more at-bats (or seven innings) with Double A Portland as his rehab assignment following a concussion last month continued, putting Drew on schedule to be in the starting lineup for the team's opener Monday afternoon at Fenway.

Meanwhile David Ortiz, who is in Fort Myers, did some running at the team's spring training complex and plans to take part in an extended spring training game Monday.    

"With the wet grounds in Florida, he didn't run the bases,'' said John Farrell. "He ran straight ahead and did his conditioning in the outfield, but that doesn't change his projected timeline of Monday getting into [extended spring training] games.''   

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Farrell said the Sox were looking forward to seeing John Lackey make his first start since the end of 2011 Saturday afternoon, though he added: "Probably not as much as John is. And I say that with all sincerity. You could probably talk to any number of pitchers who have gone through Tommy John surgery and the countless hours of rehab . . . I would hope he takes a moment -- and I'm sure he will - to reflect on what the last 16 months have been.

"But we all feel that John has the ability to impact our team in a positive way as much as anyone in our clubhouse.''    

Farrell said, this early in the season, the Sox won't have any pitcher start an inning with a pitch count over 90, but that there were no specific limits on Lackey's first few starts.