Notes: Youkilis, Ellsbury out tonight vs. Royals

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Notes: Youkilis, Ellsbury out tonight vs. Royals

By Joe Haggerty
CSNNE.com Bruins Insider Follow @hackswithhaggs
BOSTON The dog days of August are right around the corner, and that means some of the Sox regulars will be getting a little bit of rest over the next few weeks.

Kevin Youkilis tightened up his hamstring when his heal caught on the bag at first base during Monday nights 14-inning loss to the Kansas City Royals, and hes sitting out Tuesday nights second game of the four-game series.

Hes a little sore, said Francona.

Terry Francona was quick to point out that Youkilis probably would have had the night off from third base duties anyway, but the Sox skipper also opted to give red-hot centerfielder Jacoby Ellsbury a night off against Kansas City southpaw Danny Duffy.

While its a little difficult benching a leadoff man smoking the ball at a .411 clip during the homestand, Ellsbury's had little rest during the recently sweltering hot days at the ballpark.

Francona decided it was time.

Ellsbury is fine. I just think in the next couple of days it would be give guys a couple of days and let Yamaico Navarro and Darnell McDonald get some at bats against lefties. Jacoby has played a lot, said Francona. I think he wanted to play which is great but I think a day off would do him some good.

Its not that big a deal. We talk to Jacoby. I said to him in the second inning that Im going to check with you after the game, and he didnt fight. Guys get tired sometimes and a little beat up, and a day off really does them some good. We know these guys well enough to try and not get in the way.

Instead .160-hitting McDonald will play centerfield and bat leadoff against the lefty pitcher and .185-hitting Navarro gets the start at third base for the Sox in a lineup that looked more Grapefruit League than mid-summer dream.

While theres been plenty of speculation about relief help coming to Boston and another starter potentially slotting in should Clay Buchholz continue to suffer through back woes, the bench would seem to be the logical place to benefit from a trade. The current group of right-handed hitting non-starters isn't even average.

One thing the Sox and Francona are unwilling to do, however, is give up young prospects in exchange for a spare part capable of minimal contributions over the final two months of regular season and the playoffs. With the July 31 trade deadline approaching, thats the stance voiced by the manager, and upheld by the rest of the front office staff.

I like our team. Ive been around here long enough to know that Theo is going to be on the phone doing his due diligence that way hes supposed to, said Francona. I dont need to sit up here and say what we need because my job is to get the most out of these guys. But I like them a lot.

I also know Theo is going to make them better if he can. I do feel pretty strongly that I like the young players in our system, so Im not voting or saying to go do this because I like our young guys too. I really like the idea of our young guys helping us.

J.D. Drew is officially on the 15-day disabled list with a left shoulder impingement while infielder Drew Sutton has been recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket for another tour of duty with the Red Sox. Francona said that Navarro could potentially play left field if the Sox get desperate for another outfielder during the game, but he didnt see that becoming a pressing issue.

Buchholz was experiencing general soreness in his back the day after his 30-pitch bullpen session, and Francona said that the righty would be checking in with the two teams of medical staff before they begin quickening the pace of his rehab process.

We still view it as a very positive day yesterday. Hes going to revisit the medical people hes talked to and review where he thinks he is and where they think he is, Francona said. Well do it so that when we start moving fast and aggressive with things pretty quickly that hell feel good about it.

Itll be getting pretty aggressive from now on, so we just want to cover everything.

Nothing new with Bobby Jenks or Jed Lowrie over the last couple of days. Jenks isnt feeling any better and Lowrie is still working his troublesome shoulder toward taking batting practice.

Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

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."