Middlebrooks staying at third

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Middlebrooks staying at third

BOSTON -- Will Middlebrooks was given the night off on Friday against the Tampa Bay Rays at Fenway Park. It was a move that allows Adrian Gonzalez to get back to first base for at least a game, and it also was a timing move on the part of Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine.

"He's been playing every day since he came back from that little injury I think it's a nice time to do it," said Valentine before Friday's game. "Get two days off in a row and come back fresh. He'll be there tomorrow. He'll be playing tomorrow."

As to where Middlebrooks will play, right now, it doesn't seem likely that it will be anywhere but third base.

"I keep asking myself if there's another position, and I keep hearing no," said Valentine. "So, other than DH, I'm not sure what that would be. We have experimented with some things though, so, I wouldn't say that it's out of the realm of possibility. But it hasn't been discussed in a light that has inspired me."

And while a move isn't out of the realm of possibility, Valentine did say that he hasn't talked to Middlebrooks about moving him to another position.

"I'm trying not to confuse the matter," he said. "If I thought that there was a situation that I'd like to see, then I think that conversation would go. Right now, I'm trying to make sure that a young player's concentrating on what he should be concentrating on. And he's dong a pretty good job at that."

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Red Sox rally for 8-7 spring training victory over Twins

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Brian Bogusevic's RBI single in the eighth inning gave the Red Sox a come-from-behind, 8-7, spring training victory over the Minnesota Twins on Saturday in Fort Myers, Fla.

Bogusevic, 32, an outfielder signed to a minor league deal this winter, played in Japan last season and hasn't been in the major leagues since 2015 with the Phillies.

Reliever Tyler Thornburg, acquired in the offseason trade that sent Travis Shaw to the Milwaukee Brewers, had a rough outing in his Red Sox debut. He allowed five runs (four earned), four hits and a walk in 2/3 of an inning as the Red Sox fell behind 7-3 by the fourth inning.

Left-hander Roenis Elias started for Boston and allowed a first-inning home run to Byungho Park. He struck out three in two innings.

Mookie Betts went 2-for-3 with a double and first base prospect Sam Travis, hitting .500 this spring, tied it at 7 with an RBI double in the sixth.

Red Sox manager John Farrell said earlier Saturday that Eduardo Rodriguez is scheduled to make his first start on Thursday against the Tampa Bay Rays in Fort Myers and Chris Sale will make his first start March 6 against the Houston Astros in West Palm Beach. Rodriguez injured his knee in winter ball in Venezuela and threw his first batting practice session on Saturday.

The Red Sox next travel to Port Charlotte to play the Rays Sunday at 1:05 p.m.