June 29, 2009

Decision Coming Re Lowrie, Lugo, Green

Mike Lowell was in Boston this morning getting an injection of Synvisc into his right hip.

Terry Francona:
For some people, it's like a miracle. For other people, it's not. I've had it done and it didn't do a thing for me. [Brad Mills] had the same shot, and two hours later, he felt like he was brand new. The good news is if it doesn't work, [it won't be a setback ...

[Possible trip to the DL?] I guess it could happen. ... [I]f he didn't respond to this, it's probably something we'd have to think about ...
Jed Lowrie went 1-for-2 yesterday as Pawtucket's DH yesterday. Francona said that waiting until the All-Star break to bring Lowrie back "might be realistic, I don't know".

Ian Browne notes:
If Lowell doesn't respond to the shot and needs a DL stint, the 15 days would be up as soon as the All-Star break ends. The Red Sox begin the second half in Toronto on July 17.
And Julio Lugo is well aware that his Red Sox career could come to an end in a matter of a few weeks. Lugo's name has been almost completely absent from Francona's lineup cards. He has started only three games since June 5.
Tried to talk to the manager once. It's his decision. There's nothing I can do. I'm a player. They make the lineup. ... Something's going to have to happen. ... Let's not throw wood on the fire. I'm here right now and I don't want to start a war. Let's try to let it be for now and see.
Since no one knows how well Lowrie will play when he returns, or if he might reaggravate the injury, the Red Sox may decide to hang on to both Nick Green and Lugo. That would mean being one man short in the bullpen, however.

Lugo has been an obvious disaster in the field, but he's hitting .292/ .361/.385, good for a 91 OPS+. That is better than both David Ortiz (79, though it's been rising) and Jacoby Ellsbury (87) and is nearly equal to Dustin Pedroia and Green (both 92).

A couple of things from Amalie Benjamin's latest Mailbag:

Re Jed Lowrie:
The organization will give Lowrie every chance to prove that he can be the answer at shortstop. The timing is such that Lowrie will have some time to demonstrate whether or not he can be an everyday shortstop in the big leagues before the trading deadline. ... The Sox have inquired on just about every available shortstop in the big leagues, and have determined that it's not quite worth it at this point ...
Re clubhouse chemistry:
I've been particularly impressed with the attention to chemistry demonstrated by a few players in particular: Justin Masterson, Mike Lowell, Brad Penny, Takashi Saito. Clubhouse dynamics often fall along the lines of the languages spoken by players, but these players make sure to talk to everyone ... Saito, in fact, has told me that Penny brings players of different backgrounds together better than almost anyone he's ever seen.

On Saturday, Jason Bay was out of the lineup for only the second time this season -- resting while the temperature hit 95 in Atlanta. "It's too hot for a Canadian." ... Bay's replacement, Mark Kotsay, drove in the game's only run.

Saturday's win was only the second time in Tim Wakefield's Red Sox career that he had won a game by a 1-0 score. The other one? His second start in a Boston uniform -- May 30, 1995, in Oakland. Elias says that stretch -- 14 years, 28 days -- is the longest span for any pitcher in major league history between 1-0 wins for the same organization.

The Red Sox finished interleague play with a 11-7 record (.611, a 99-win pace).


L-girl said...

Nice to hear about the clubhouse, especially Penny. I'm not one who believes clubhouse chemistry is a must - winning creates chemistry, not the other way around - but it's still fun to know.

"It's too hot for a Canadian."

See? He'll always be Canadian.

Zenslinger said...

Buried in Cafardo's Baseball Notes from yesterday is the assertion that Dice-K didn't do the Red Sox strength conditioning program because he seemed "convinced that a Japanese shoulder is different from an American shoulder."

I don't know that this is true as stated. Having lived in Japan, I am always sticking up for Japan. But I have to say that this is one of the most maddening aspects of Japanese culture -- the exaggerated sense of uniqueness.

The most ridiculous and extreme example I have heard of: ski manufacturers complaining to the Japanese government about protectionism were told that Japanese snow is different from snow in other countries, so skis manufactured in other countries won't work properly in Japan.

For Dice-K to make the kind of career commitment he has, he must be able to see beyond this kind of thinking. I hope so -- I even think so. Even Cafardo says he's come around by now. But reading that really set me off.

richard said...

You gotta like how classy Lugo is about all this. Good for him.

andy said...

I have a couple insensitive and very funny jokes about japan and their uniqueness. Just get mad at me now.

James said...

Clubhouse chemistry is overrated, but still pretty important, I think. It's hard to measure, and I think too much is made of it, but you look at the Mets, and their collapses, and the purported division between their Latin/non-Latin populations, and their constant playing below potential... it makes you think.