Red Sox notes: Ellsbury, Victorino in the lineup

Red Sox notes: Ellsbury, Victorino in the lineup
September 2, 2013, 12:45 pm
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Manager John Farrell said before the game he is hopeful Jacoby Ellsbury could return to the lineup on Wednesday.

(AP Photo)

BOSTON – Both Shane Victorino and Jacoby Ellsbury, who left Sunday’s game with injuries, are in Monday’s starting lineup for the first of three games against the American League Central-leading Tigers at Fenway Park.
 
Victorino left Sunday’s win over the White Sox after the sixth inning with a left hip contusion, an injury he has been dealing with and aggravated attempting to slide into first base in the fourth inning. Ellsbury left in the ninth after getting jammed on several swings at the plate. He had noticeable swelling in his left hand after the game, despite icing it.
 
“By the time they got some treatment before they left yesterday it was looking more and more like they’d be avail today. That was confirmed this morning,” said manager John Farrell.
 
At this point in the season, most players are dealing with some form or dings and dents.
 
“Hey, we’re at the time of year when most every everyday player is dealing with something,” Farrell said. “But they’re ready to go. Everyone here recognizes the situation we’re in, and the need to answer the bell every day.”
 
* Tigers' slugger Miguel Cabrera, who has been dealing with abdominal discomfort, is not in the Tigers lineup today.  He could play in the remaining two games.
 
* Jose Iglesias returns to Fenway for the first time since being sent to Detroit on July 30 in the three-team deal that brought Jake Peavy from the White Sox to Boston.
 
“Clearly he’s improved their infield defense with his range,” Farrell said. “I don’t know if any of us in this organization have seen a better defender at the position.  I think that’s a pretty strong statement for a guy who’s in the early stages of what should be a long career. He’s going to make all the routine plays. He’s going to make the well above-average play. And for the time particularly this year he was a good offensive player. We didn’t necessarily want to trade him, but it seemed to be a good fit for all three teams involved, and I think just a v good bb trade when you consider all parties involved.”
 
“He’s an elite defender.”
 
The Sox signed Iglesias, 23, in September 2009 as an international free agent after he defected from Cuba.  While it was difficult to let him go, Farrell said, it was the right decision for the team.
 
“If you isolate just the player, you don’t find that type of defender come along very often,” Farrell said. “[But,] we also happened to be dealing with a position of depth, and felt our need was more as a [starting pitcher] at that time, particularly where we are this year. He’s a good kid, and he’s confident, and he played his [butt] off for us. You don’t necessarily like to give that away or trade that away -- I shouldn’t say give it away because we got a very good pitcher in return -- and we wish him nothing but the best.”
 
Iglesias is batting .319 combined between Boston and Detroit this season. In 28 games with the Tigers – all at shortstop – he is batting .292, with a home run, five RBI, nine runs scored, a .344 on-base percentage, and .360 slugging percentage. He leads AL rookies in batting average and with 30 multi-hit games.
 
* Three games in September against the Tigers, who have the second-best record in the AL to the Sox, could be a good test. Farrell, though, prefers to take the games from a different perspective.
 
“I think the most imp thing is winning another game to get closer,” he said. “And that’s shared by all. And I can say that with confidence based on what is discussed [in the clubhouse]. And it’s not dominating the conversation, but it’s a part of it. And I think it’s one of the beauties of this team that has shown throughout the year,  regardless of what’s happened yesterday or not knowing what’ll be there tomorrow, it’s today and that’s the most imp thing.”
 
* The Sox have won their  last four day games and is an ML-best 25-12 (.676) in the day this season. Sox’ pitchers have an ERA of  3.11 ERA, giving up 115 earned runs in 329.1 innings, in day games is best in the AL and  second in MLB to the Dodgers (2.46).
 
* Red Sox lineup:
Ellsbury, CF
Victorino, RF
Pedroia, 2B
Ortiz, DH
Nava, LF
Napoli, 1B
Saltalamacchia, C
Drew, SS
Middlebrooks, 3B
Lackey, RHP, 8-11, 3.19
 
* Tigers lineup:
Jackson, CF
Hunter, RF
Fielder, 1B
Martinez, DH
Dirks, LF
Infante, 2B
Kelly, 3B
Avila, C
Iglesias, SS
Fister, RHP, 10-7, 3.81