Injury update: Crawford, Ellsbury, Bailey

560850.jpg

Injury update: Crawford, Ellsbury, Bailey

BOSTON Left fielder Carl Crawford began his 20-day rehab assignment Saturday, serving as the designated hitter for the Gulf Coast League Red Sox in Fort Myers, Crawford went 0-for-3 with a run scored and two walks, one intentional.

Manager Bobby Valentine said Crawford is expected to have an off day Sunday and DH again on Monday. Crawford is expected to begin playing in the field sometime in the next week.

Valentine couldnt say how long Crawford would stay with the low-level minor league team.

When hes ready to move, hell move, Valentine said. We really cant put a timetable on that.

Its more controlled environment. And we want to make sure we control it as well as possible.

Jacoby Ellsbury took batting practice and fielded groundballs in center field from coach Alex Ochoa before Saturdays game against the Braves.

While Ellsbury is progressing, there are still hurdles he needs to clear.

He needs to throw more. He needs to be confident that he can get back to bases, dive, things like that that are shoulder-related and swing more, Valentine said. I know its not his throwing shoulder but it is involved in throwing.

I think hes healthy.

So far, Ellsbury has only been fielding grounders in center field, and not fly balls.

Must be maybe groundballs in the beginning and you have to reach a little more possibly. Valentine said. Maybe he doesnt want to really be reaching up that much with that arm. Thats probably it with the glove on.

Andrew Bailey had a slight setback during his bullpen session yesterday in his recovery from April surgery on his right thumb.

It didnt go perfectly, Valentine said. Were going to let him rest a little before he gets on the mound.

I hate to put a timetable on it. Well see how he progresses.

His arm didnt feel great throwing as much as... we were accelerating his progress a little and we decided to slow it down.

He was a little ahead of schedule throwing off the mound. Went back to the flat. His thumbs fine. Its just how often he throws flat and the mound.

Betts and Bradley Jr. combine for seven RBI, Red Sox roll to 9-2 win

red_sox_mookie_betts_032817.jpg

Betts and Bradley Jr. combine for seven RBI, Red Sox roll to 9-2 win

The Boston Red Sox put up six runs in the first inning and coasted to a 9-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night.

Mookie Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. led the way for the Red Sox with four and three RBI respectfully. Both outfielders had two-run home runs in the Sox’ big first inning.

Knuckleballer Steven Wright gave up one earned run in four innings, his ERA for the spring is now 0.68.

The Red Sox are back in action again on Wednesday at 1:05 p.m when Rick Porcello makes his final spring training start against the Minnesota Twins.

Hernandez has chance at Red Sox opening day roster after Rutledge injury

Hernandez has chance at Red Sox opening day roster after Rutledge injury

Infielder Marco Hernandez may make the Red Sox roster after all.

Fellow infielder Josh Rutledge, the presumptive 25th man on the Red Sox, suffered a left hamstring strain on Tuesday against the Pirates, according to reporters in Florida, including Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald.

If Rutledge isn’t ready for opening day, Hernandez, a left-handed hitter, may have his crack. 

The question is whether the Sox would be comfortable without a right-handed bat to complement both Pablo Sandoval and Mitch Moreland on the corners. Rutledge was going to give the Sox that right-handed look they sought. (When Hanley Ramirez's shoulder will be healthy enough to play first base is unclear, but isn't expected to be too long.)

Neither Rutledge nor Hernandez has played first base in the majors or minors.

A big-league rookie last year, Hernandez has done decently against lefties at the upper levels of the minors, hitting .328 vs. them at Triple-A Pawtucket last season in 67 at-bats. He hit .315 in 54 at-bats at Pawtucket, with a .318 average against them that season in 88 at-bats for Double-A Portland.

Rutledge is a Rule 5 draft pick who has to remain on the major league 25-man roster the whole season or the Sox risk losing him. Placement on the disabled list doesn’t affect his status unless he’s on the disabled list for a very lengthy time.

An alternative option is Steve Selsky, who has first-base experience, but he's already been optioned.