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Red Sox Notebook

Reddick is recalled to fill in for Hermida

Josh Reddick goes in full tilt as he slides in safely with a triple in the eighth inning. Josh Reddick goes in full tilt as he slides in safely with a triple in the eighth inning. (Rob Carr/Associated Press)
By Amalie Benjamin
Globe Staff / June 6, 2010

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BALTIMORE — Having seen fellow outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury miss most of the season, Jeremy Hermida was a bit nervous.

He woke up yesterday morning with soreness in his ribs and chest, which was more worrisome than it had been the night before when he sustained the injury in a collision with third baseman Adrian Beltre. So Hermida went to get a CT scan to ensure that it was just bruising and not something more serious, such as Ellsbury’s four fractured ribs.

Hermida and the Sox were relieved to get good news when the preliminary reports came back, and Hermida could be back in the lineup as soon as today.

“It was more of a precautionary thing,’’ Hermida said. “The forearm was a little tight, a little sore. But you don’t want to mess around with the ribs. I woke up this morning and it was a little more sore than it was when it first happened. Just wanted to make sure everything was fine. It turned out OK.’’

Asked if knowing about Ellsbury’s injury played a part, Hermida said, “A little bit, to be honest with you. Just knowing it was a similar situation, similar thing, similar spot, you just want to rule out anything like that, especially when it comes to bones and those kinds of things. We just wanted to rule it out and eliminate that thought and know in my mind that we can push it. As soon as I can go, I can go.’’

But he couldn’t go last night. And with yet another outfielder out of commission — Mike Cameron (abdominal injury) remains on the active roster but is not ready to play — the Sox were forced to make a move. They optioned reliever Scott Atchison back to Triple A Pawtucket and recalled outfielder Josh Reddick, who was in the lineup last night against the Orioles, playing center field and batting eighth.

Hermida said he finally saw a replay of the collision yesterday.

“It’s about how I remember it,’’ he said. “At the time, I didn’t want to sit there and lay on the ground. It was nothing where I couldn’t get up and walk off the field. Getting in here, the adrenaline goes away for a second, you sit there and hurt a little bit.’’

Beltre also was not in the starting lineup last night. Beltre banged up his knee on the play, though he said he was available if needed.

“He doesn’t want to take an inning off of any game,’’ manager Terry Francona said. “In fact, [Friday] night I think he was getting tired of us asking. At one point, he told [bench coach] DeMarlo [Hale], ‘Look, I’m not getting worse, I’m getting better.’ But he got banged around pretty good. His knee’s sore, his ankle’s sore, I think the groin’s a little sore. I just thought giving him a night over the course of a long year will be really good for him.’’

Not that Beltre was happy about it.

“Tried to [fight it]. Didn’t work,’’ Beltre said. “Obviously not hard enough. I don’t like days off, period. I feel like I have to get the whole thing back, and I just don’t feel comfortable at the plate.’’

Back for more
Despite hitting only .191 for the PawSox, Reddick was summoned. Reddick made his major league debut in Baltimore last season, in a series in which he recorded his first hit and home run.

“He gave us a big lift that series,’’ Francona said. “Remember, he hit the ball out of the ballpark. He had the bloody nose. He had the Kleenex hanging out of his nose. He was hitting home runs, playing defense. That was what we hoped would happen, and it worked out great. If he wants to do that again, that’ll be OK. Not the bloody nose.’’

Reddick said despite the low batting average, he has been playing much better lately. Part of the reason might have been being dropped in the order, after not being comfortable hitting leadoff.

“For about the last two weeks, his approach has really been a lot better,’’ Francona said.

“The numbers weren’t really showing much,’’ Reddick said. “But as of the last two, three weeks, I’ve been hitting the ball really well, having great at-bats, just hasn’t been working out for me. Just people were making plays, hitting them right at them.

“Just overthinking the process of hitting and wondering why stuff didn’t happen for me. I’ve never really liked the leadoff spot, so that could be why. And just hitting in the 5- or 6-hole, like I have been in the first two years, is kind of a comfort zone for me, so it helped out a lot.’’

Though Ryan Kalish has been playing very well, he was just promoted to Triple A, and Francona didn’t think it would have been in his best interests to be brought to the big leagues so soon.

Reddick, who went 1 for 3 last night, scoring the Sox’ second run in an 8-2 win, flew here yesterday from Louisville, Ky., after he got the news. It’s unclear how long he will remain with the Sox, though it might be a short stay with Hermida looking like he won’t be out for long and Cameron on the mend.

“Just try to come out here and add a little spark, I suppose,’’ Reddick said. “Can’t really expect much, but hopefully I can kind of give a little boost.’’

Lineup shuffle
With Beltre out, Kevin Youkilis played third base last night. “It’s not that easy, but basically for me it’s natural,’’ Youkilis said. That allowed the Sox to get lefthanded bats in the lineup against righthander Jeremy Guthrie, with switch-hitters Victor Martinez at first and Jason Varitek behind the plate. It also meant that on a night that seemed perfect for Mike Lowell to get a chance, he again was on the bench. Lowell does not have good numbers against Guthrie, with a .174 (4 for 23) average . . . Caught in a numbers game, Atchison was sent down for the third time this season. “Scotty’s unfortunately kind of been that guy,’’ said Francona. “He has options. He knows it. He understands. I think he gets frustrated. He also knows that we think a lot of him as a pitcher and sometimes guys get on that shuttle when the team gets in a little bit of a bind.’’ . . . Ellsbury ran, hit, and caught balls yesterday as the Sox increase the intensity of his workouts . . . Cameron seemed fairly confident that he would be able to play in today’s finale, though he made no guarantees. The Sox will decide whether he’s ready this morning. Francona said, when asked if Cameron would play, “Maybe. That’s about as good as I can do. If he’s OK [today], he’s going to play.’’

Getting close?
Boof Bonser, whose rehab assignment with Pawtucket ends today, was scheduled to pitch an inning in relief yesterday. A roster decision has not been made concerning Bonser, though he could be preparing for a role with the big club . . . There was a moment in Friday night’s game when it looked like there might be a scuffle in the dugout, as Beltre nearly took a swing at Martinez. It was playful, for the most part. Martinez rubbed Beltre’s head after the third baseman’s home run, and Beltre did not appreciate it. “He knows I don’t like that,’’ Beltre said. “I don’t like anybody to touch my head, and he knows it. He does it on purpose. So I’m not responsible for everything that happens after that.’’ Asked if there might be payback, Beltre said, “Later. Off the dugout, probably, where nobody can see. I know where to get him. He’s got a bad toe.’’ . . . Before the Orioles scored in the ninth inning, they had gone 20 consecutive innings without scoring . . . Dustin Pedroia’s steal in the sixth inning was the 50th of his career . . . Darnell McDonald had a two-run double in the ninth, making him 4 for 5 as a pinch hitter, with a double, home run, and four RBIs this season.

Amalie Benjamin can be reached at abenjamin@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @amaliebenjamin.

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