Cherington: Injuries have hampered Youkilis

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Cherington: Injuries have hampered Youkilis

BOSTON -- Kevin Youkilis was placed on the disabled list Wednesday, and Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington hopes the rest will help the veteran third baseman get straightened out.

"I think the injury and his low offensive numbers are related," Cherington said. "I don't think he has felt real good. He started to feel better and swing the bat better, and there were some good signs the end of the last homestand and the early part of the road trip. He started to put some doubles together. And then the back started bothering him over the weekend in Chicago.

"He's got to feel better physically. Coming off last year, where he missed a lot of time, he was just kind of getting back in. It's an unorthodox approach, obviously, what he does with his hands. And he was starting to get comfortable with that again and the back flared up. If he feels better and he's playing consistently, we know he's going to hit. We just got to get to that point . . .

"It's not uncommon for one injury in one part of the body to have some correlation to another . . . And he's had a lot of issues around his core. So we just felt like this was the time to put him on the disabled list and give him a chance to get ahead of some of this stuff instead of asking him to swim upstream for the next two months."

Youkilis is in the final year of his contract, and Cherington noted: "Obviously, he's more motivated than anyone to get out there and play. He's got a lot of reasons to do that."

So do the Sox.

"It's a long year and we need Youkilis' bat in the middle of our lineup," said Cherington. "And when he's not feeling good, he's not the same guy. Hopefully, this downtime will let him get ahead of stuff and so that it's not nagging him all year."

Cardinals pull away late for 7-2 victory over Red Sox

Cardinals pull away late for 7-2 victory over Red Sox

The Cardinals broke open a close game with four runs in the last two innings against Red Sox relief prospect Chandler Shepherd and went on to a 7-2 exhibition victory over Boston yesterday at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers.

Red Sox-Cardinals box score

The loss dropped the Sox to 1-3 for the exhibition season.

Boston had jumped on top, 1-0, on an RBI single by Mitch Moreland in the bottom of the first, but St. Louis countered with two runs in the second and one in the third, all against starter Brian Johnson. It remained 3-1 until the Cards touched Shepherd for two runs in the eighth and two in the ninth. The Red Sox added their final run in the bottom of the ninth when catcher Jordan Procyshen, who spent last season at Single-A Salem, hit a sacrifice fly.

Moreland, Xander Bogaerts and Chris Young each had two hits for the Red Sox. who also got scoreless relief from Teddy Stankiewicz, Noe Ramirez, Robby Scott, Kyle Martin and Brandon Workman. It was Bogaerts' last game before leaving to compete for The Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic.

The Sox host the Yankees on Tuesday at 1:05 p.m.

Dustin Pedroia taking cues from Tom Brady to extend his career

Dustin Pedroia taking cues from Tom Brady to extend his career

Dustin Pedroia is no stranger to injuries. That's a big reason why he's no longer a stranger to the sometimes peculiar practices of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

In an interview on WEEI's "Bradfo Show," Pedroia told Rob Bradford that he's been taking cues from the five-time Super Bowl-winning QB to help extend his playing career and make his body healthier and more durable.

“I understand what he does and know what he does. I think it’s awesome,” Pedroia told Bradford. “There’s a reason why he’s successful at his age (39), and he looks better now than he did when he first came to the league. You have to be smarter as you get older and learn different styles -- the way to train and the way you take care of your body to be able to perform and stay on the field. It doesn’t matter what sport you’re playing. He’s definitely got that figured out.”

Pedroia, of course, played the entire 2013 World Series-winning season with a torn ligament in his thumb. He's battled through various other lower body and hand injuries over the past few seasons, as well. But in 2016, he had his best season in recent memory, posting his highest OPS since 2011, as WEEI notes.

Part of that is with his own take on the Brady approach -- which focuses more on pliability and resistance training than extensive, heavy weight lifting -- and a healthier overall lifestyle, something Brady is notoriously infamous for having.

"There’s tons of ways to take care of your body. It’s not just get in the weight room and throw weights around,” Pedroia explained. “As you get older, the human body can’t take the pounding if you’re going in there and power lifting. When you’re younger, you can handle some of that. But as you get older, you got to be smarter. Sometimes less is more -- whether that’s weight or reps or whatever. You’ve just got to be smart. And eating wise, that’s a big part of recovery. If you put the right foods in your body, you’ll heal faster if you’re injured or recover faster. It’s like a car, man. Put bad gas in, bro. It’s not going to be the same as good gas.”

He hopes the approach can, at the very least, keep him moving for quite some time.

“I plan on living until I’m 100," he said. "So we’re not even halfway home."