FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Some quick hits from manager John Farrell before heading over to Hammond Stadium:
* David Ortiz is taking part in infield drills Thursday morning and is scheduled to take batting practice, but he will wait until after BP before deciding whether he runs the bases again. Farrell insists that the “general soreness” Ortiz is experiencing is not in the Achilles, but in other tendons around the ankle.
“More because of the volume [of activity],’’ Farrell said. “Basically just getting back in shape, he’s now able to do more aggressive running.’’
* Because lefty reliever Craig Breslow has missed so much time, Farrell said, the fact that he will have to revert to a pitcher’s spring training protocol from the start [long toss, side, BP, game] makes it iffy that he will be ready for the start of the season. When I talked to Breslow a couple of days ago, he was confident that he would break camp with the team.
* Lefty Franklin Morales, who has been sidelined with some back stiffness, has responded to anti-inflammatories and will begin throwing again. Because he’s been out, the Sox have shelved plans to stretch him out as a starter. The next week should serve as a barometer for his readiness for April 1.
* Third baseman Will Middlebrooks is the latest victim of “intestinal turmoil,” according to Farrell, and was sent home. Jacoby Ellsbury and Mark Hamilton are back and expected to get a couple of at-bats apiece.
* Farrell noted that Allen Webster, because he has thrown more minor-league innings, will not be placed on the same innings limits as Rubby De La Rosa, and very much factors into the team’s rotation depth. Webster is expected to begin the season in Triple-A Pawtucket.
* Per the new collective bargaining agreement, the club cannot schedule any kind of workout in Yankee Stadium the day before the April 1 regular season opener, not even an optional workout, Farrell said. The staff will be there preparing for the game, but any players working out will be doing so on a “voluntary” basis, the manager said. My over-under on players showing up to the ballpark that day: 23.
Here's the lineup for today's game against the Twins:
1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
3. Stephen Drew, SS
4. Mike Napoli, 1B
5. Ryan Lavarnway, DH
6. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, c
7. Daniel Nava, LF
8. Ryan Sweeney, RF
9. Drew Sutton, 3B
SP -- Clay Buchholz, RHP