By Sean McAdam
NEW YORK -- For about 15 minutes Friday afternoon, behind closed doors, Red Sox starter John Lackey, head trainer Mike Reinold, manager Terry Francona and general manager Theo Epstein met.
The meeting came two days after another poor start from Lackey (nine runs in 6 23 innings in Toronto), his fourth bad outing of the season.
The Sox, of course, are well aware that Lackey is going through a difficult time with an off-field family medical issue, but wanted to determine if there were any physical issues that were a factor in his struggles.
Lackey assured the staff that he felt fine physically.
"We've talked to Lack,'' said Francona. "Some of the things have to be a little bit personal. But as far as pitching-wise, no, I don't think there's anything to address. There are some things like predictability and things, but whether guys throw good, bad or in-between, I think we always try to address things as we go.''
"His stuff has been inconsistent,'' said Epstein. "He hasn't necessarily held the velocity through the middle and late innings as much as he has in the past. I think he threw the ball better in spring training, but it's still early. All that means is that he has things to work on.''