Gonzalez hopes to resolve his health, contract

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Gonzalez hopes to resolve his health, contract

By SeanMcAdam
CSNNE.com

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Adrian Gonzalez is happy to be a member of the Red Sox. He'll be happier still when two issues get resolved -- his surgically-repaired right shoulder and a completed contract extension.

Gonzalez underwent surgery on his right shoulder in October, but is waiting to get get clearance from surgeon Dr. David Altchek to begin swinging. That should come next week and could put him a week ahead of schedule.

"I'm looking forward to that day," he said. "I've been counting the days now. Hopefully, when the doctor sees me, he clears me and I can start swinging that day or the following day. It's different (not being allowed to swing at the start of spring training), but I'm in no rush. It's a process and you don't want to get ahead of anything."

Gonzalez said he and the Red Sox were waiting to hear back from Altcheck Thursday to set up an appointment. The visit will take place in Port St. Lucie, across the state (Altchek is based there as the Mets' team physician), and should take no longer than 15 or 20 minutes.

Originally, the Sox and Gonzalez had set March 1 as a tentative date for when the first baseman would beging swinging, with a Grapefruit League debut three weeks later. Under the revised timetable, Gonzalez would appear to be about a week ahead of schedule, meaning he might see some game action in the second week of March.

"There's zero discomfort, zero limitations (with the shoulder)," he said. "I'm exactly where I need to be post-surgery. Everything's going as planned. It feels great. I know I could swing today if I wanted to, but there's no rush. I'll be ready for Opening Day. I feel like I'll be 100 percent. April 1 is definitely something I should be ready for."

Gonzalez added that he customarily doesn't swing until "spring training, so I'm not too far behind," where he would be in any other off-season.

Then there's the issue of his contract. There's a general feeling around the Red Sox that Gonzalez and the club have essentially reached agreement on a seven-year, 154 million extension, but are waiting until after Opening Day -- for payroll and luxury tax purposes -- to finalize it and officially announce it.

"Hopefully, we can get it done sooner rather than later," said Gonzalez. "From my end, I want to show them I'm healthy and I'm playing 100 percent out there."

Gonzalez said he watched the recently concluded negotiations involving Albert Pujols and the St. Louis Cardinals with some interest, but said those talks wouldn't have much influence on his own.

"He's him and I'm me," said Gonzalez. "For the most part I feel he's the best player in the game so you can't really compare yourself to him."

Said GM Theo Epstein: "I think it was well documented that we had a lot of conversations in the window that led up to the trade. As we said at the time, we developed a lot of mutual trust and understanding. When the time is right, I think both sides will be able to sit down, be fair with each other and hopefully work something out."

Sean McAdam can be reached at smcadam@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Red Sox’ quotes, notes and stars from 2-1 loss to Rays

Red Sox’ quotes, notes and stars from 2-1 loss to Rays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Notes, quotes and stars from the Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Rays:

QUOTES:

* "There's not much I can do about it now. It's kind of a waiting game and hopefully, the tests come back clean.'' -Andrew Benintendi, on the uncertainty surrounding his knee injury.

* "Sometimes, I like that, sometimes I don't because I'd kind of take a couple of quick outs in place of those to get a couple of more innings out there.'' -Drew Pomeranz on his career high 11 strikeouts.

* "That's probably the spot that looms the largest. Jackie's become more aggressive early in the count, but at the same time, that aggressiveness can work against you.'' -Farrell on Jackie Bradley Jr. swinging at the first pitch following a walk with the bases loaded.

NOTES:

* Drew Pomeranz recorded a career-high 11 strikeouts

 * Since moving to the leadoff spot, Dustin Pedroia has a slash line of .397/.418/.460 in 16 games.

* Pomeranz has yielded two runs or fewer in five consecutive starts.

* On the just-completed road trip, the Red Sox led in all but one game.

* Thursday's loss was the fourth this season in which the Sox allowed two runs or fewer.

 * The past 18 Red Sox losses have come by a combined 37 runs.

* Until Thursday, the Red Sox had won 20 of their past 31 day games.

* The bottom third of the makeshift Red Sox lineup combined to go 2-for-12.

* The Sox missed out on a chance to have an eight-win road trip, which would have been their first since 2011.

STARS:

1) Jake Odorizzi

The Rays started, facing a depleted Red Sox lineup, limited the Sox to a single run over seven innings, allowing just five hits and getting out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam by allowing just one run.

2) Mikie Mahtook

Mahtook was 0-for-34 when facing Drew Pomeranz in the seventh inning, but that didn't stop him from doubling home Steven Souza Jr with what proved to be the winning run.

3) Dustin Pedroia

The Sox couldn't generate much of anything at all offensively, but don't blame Pedroia. The leadoff hitter had three hits and a walk and was on base four times for the Sox.