Notes: Buchholz (back), Lowrie (shoulder) exit early

175737.jpg

Notes: Buchholz (back), Lowrie (shoulder) exit early

By SeanMcAdam
CSNNE.com Red SoxInsider Follow @sean_mcadam
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Clay Buchholz limited the Tampa Bay Rays to a single run on two hits Thursday night. But Buchholz himself was limited, forced to leave after five innings because of recurring lower-back stiffness.

"It's the nagging back that's been the same as last year,'' said Buchholz. "My first thought was to try and get through five innings with it and give it to the bullpen. It progressively got a little bit worse after the second inning. After those first two was when it started bothering me.''

Buchholz said he felt the back "grabbing . . . it feels like a pulled muscle in there and every time I tried to get out and extend a little bit more, I felt it. The last innning, I felt like I was compensating for it in my delivery and that's how you're going to get yourself hurt in other places.''

The Red Sox have some options regarding Buchholz. They could put him on the DL and hope that 15 days will quiet the condition down.

Or, with Andrew Miller about to arrive and two off-days looming in the next 11 days, they could simply skip Buchholz, or, as they did two weeks ago, give him some extra rest before his next start.

"We can move some people around,'' he said, "so we'll get it checked out Friday and see how it feels.''

Jed Lowrie also came out of the game, also battling a nagging injury that seems to be getting worse instead of better.

For almost two weeks, Lowrie has been hampered by a sore left shoulder, the result of a collision with Mike Cameron in Detroit.

Lowrie had three days off before returning to the lineup Wednesday, but came out after a first inning at-bat Thursday when he felt the shoulder had "slipped out'' of its socket.

Asked if he thought a trip to the DL was likely, Lowrie said: "I have no idea. I've never done this before.''

Lowrie will be examined Friday.

"I certainly wasn't this sore before,'' said Lowrie, "but I don't really know what's going on yet, either. I just know what I felt.''

The Sox have two candidates to take his spot on the roster in Pawtucket. They could call back Drew Sutton, who spent time with the club recently before being optioned back to Pawtucket after Sunday's game. Ordinarily, a player being optioned out has to wait 10 days before being recalled, but there are exceptions made for injuries and this would be one of those exceptions.

Another potential solution would be Yamaico Navarro, who came off the DL at Triple A Thursday, and, like Lowrie, can play three infield positions.

Jonathan Papelbon is hopeful that his appeal of a recent three-game suspension can be heard Friday. Papelbon is waiting to hear final details from the Players Association, a representative of which will join him in the hearing.

Papelbon was suspended last week for his actions in the June 4 game in which he made physical contact with umpire Tony Randazzo.

"I'm trying to get something done,'' said Papelbon. "You know how these things are, man. I'm leaning toward hearing it out. We'll see what happens. It's getting kind of old.''

Papelbon made his first appearance Thursday night since last Friday in Toronto and the rust showed early when he allowed a double to Casey Kotchman and a single to B.J. Upton before coming back to get the next three hitters, two by strikeout.

"I don't think anybody realizes for a guy in my position to have six days off and pitch,'' said Papelbon. "That's pretty much what it came down to tonight.''

Jacoby Ellslbury wasn't in the starting lineup for just the third time in the first 68 games Thursday night.

Terry Francona wanted to load his lineup with righthanded hitters against Tampa starter David Price, who was holding opposing lefties to a .163 batting average before Thursday's game.

There were other factors, too. Francona noted that Ellsbury had played every previous game on the nine-game road trip and the Sox would be arriving in Boston early Friday morning.

Also, Ellsbury fouled a ball off his shin Wednesday night and the manager thought Ellsbury could use a night off to heal.

"I just think, overall, it's in his best interest,'' said Francona of Ellsbury.

Ellsbury entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the eighth and played the final two innings in the field.

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

Scott's taste of big-league life with Red Sox has him hungering for more

Scott's taste of big-league life with Red Sox has him hungering for more

CHESNUT HILL -- The Red Sox Rookie Development Program is designed to help young players prepare for what playing at the major-league level is like,. That can be valuable for a prospect like Rafael Devers, who hasn’t even made it to Double-A.

But of the eight-man cast at the workout this year, there’s one guy who actually has major-league experience.

Robby Scott joined the Red Sox as a September call-up last season and turned some heads, holding opponents scoreless over six innings of work.

Now the lefty is back working with younger guys to prepare himself for spring training -- something he’s itching to get started.

“It’s one thing that we always talk about,” the left-handed reliever told CSNNE.com “It’s a tough road to get there, but it’s an even tougher and harder road to stay there. And having that taste in September last year was incredible to be a part of it.”

That taste Scott had last fall has only made the desire to rejoin Boston greater.

“Yeah, because now you know what it’s like,” Scott said CSNNE.com. “You see it and you’re there and you’re a part of it. And it’s like, ‘Man, I wanna be there.’ You’re a little bit more hungry.”

And his hunger to pitch with the Red Sox only becomes greater at an event like this where he’s the only one with MLB time.

“They ask on a consistent basis,” Scott started, “ ‘What’s it like?’ ‘What was it like getting there the first day?’ ‘How did the guys react?’ ‘What was it like dealing with the media?’

“That’s what this program is here for, just to kind of gives these guys a little taste of what it is like and get familiar with the circumstances.

While the experience and constant discussion invites players to try to do more in the offseason or change their routine, the 27-year-old has stayed the course, trusting what’s gotten him there.

“The offseason training stays the same, nothing really changes on that side of things,” Scott said. “Nothing changes. Go about my business the way I have the last six, seven years.”

Red Sox prospect Sam Travis 'not at all' worried about knee

Red Sox prospect Sam Travis 'not at all' worried about knee

CHESNUT HILL -- Kyle Schwarber made his triumphant return to the Cubs lineup in the 2016 World Series after missing the regular season with a torn ACL. Only months after the Cubs outfielder tore his ACL, Schwarber’s teammate from Indiana University -- and Red Sox prospect -- Sam Travis suffered the very same injury, missing the end of 2016.

“I actually talked to [Schwarber] quite a bit,” Travis said following the group training session. “He was one step ahead of me at all times . . . He gave me the lowdown, told me that it was like.

“With this kind of injury and the activity we do on a daily basis, it’s going to be something you take care of the rest of your life. Whether it’s treatment or the training room, you’re going to get to 100 percent. But you’re still going to have to take care of it."

Now the first baseman is back on his feet and was even healthy enough to join his teammates in lateral movement drills at the Red Sox rookie development program at Boston College.

If you didn’t know any better while watching him, you’d think the injury never happened. And that’s how Travis is approaching it.

“Not at all [worried about it],” Travis told CSNNE.com. “It’s one of those things you kind of pretend it’s just like your normal knee. You don’t do anything different because that may injury something else. You don’t want to try to prevent something from happening because you my pull your hip or something like that.

“You’ve just gotta go about it and trust yourself.”

That’s a great sign for Travis in his climb to joining the big league club. Getting over the physical portion of an injury takes time, but there’s usually a proven system set in place.

The mental side is another animal entirely and varies from player to player.

Luckily for the Red Sox, Travis doesn’t overthink much of anything.

“Nah, I’m a pretty simple guy,” he said.