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Red Sox notebook

Aceves: comings and goings

Pitcher returns for second time

By Michael Vega
Globe Staff / May 7, 2011

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Alfredo Aceves returned for a second stint with the Red Sox yesterday, one day after he was scratched from a start for Pawtucket in Scranton, Pa.

When he showed up at the Sox clubhouse, the 28-year-old righthander from Sonora, Mexico, seemed to have a bit of an edge.

Asked if it was easy to flip the switch, going back and forth from the minors, Aceves said, tersely, “There is no switch, OK? So you go there or you come here or whatever. You play whatever you’re going to be.

“I’m a pitcher. That’s what I do, no matter if I’m used as a starter, a closer, or a reliever.’’

With Aceves up, the Sox sent Scott Atchison back to Pawtucket. Atchison, who had been called up Thursday along with Rich Hill when Bobby Jenks and Dan Wheeler were placed on the 15-day disabled list, pitched 3 2/3 innings in Thursday’s 11-0 loss to the Angels.

Since Hill was out of options and the club did not want to expose him to waivers, Atchison was the logical choice for demotion.

“We kind of did what we didn’t want to do with Atch, which was to bring him up for one day and send him back,’’ said manager Terry Francona, who was ejected from last night’s game against the Twins for arguing a balk call in the second inning.

“We felt like it was the safest thing we could do for our staff,’’ Francona said of Atchison’s brief promotion.

“He gave us so much, which we appreciate, but at the same time he wasn’t going to pitch for a while. Unfortunately for Atch, he’s the guy we can deal with, and he’ll be back.’’

Aceves didn’t have to wait long to be pressed into service, entering in the fifth in relief of Tim Wakefield, and going the final 4 2/3 innings, allowing one run on three hits in the 9-2 loss. He also had a run-scoring balk.

Aceves took no consolation in the fact he saved the bullpen with his longest outing since going six innings in a start for the Yankees Sept. 20, 2008.

“What can I say? For me, I prefer to win,’’ he said. “If I do a good job and don’t win, I’d prefer to win. I want to win, definitely.’’

Jenks confident Jenks met with the media and indicated he also had a strain in his right biceps, as well as tendinitis.

“The best way to describe it is standing here and doing nothing but my arm would feel like I had just done 12 sets of curls,’’ Jenks said. “So it was just very fatigued and constant achiness.’’

Jenks said it bothered him over the last week before the muscle cramped up as he warmed up to come into Wednesday night’s 13-inning marathon against the Angels.

“I was trying to throw through it, thinking it was nothing,’’ Jenks said. “Turns out, it wasn’t.’’

Jenks suspected his strained biceps was the result of a mechanical flaw he detected watching film of his last outing. In Sunday’s win over Seattle, he blew a 2-0 lead by giving up a hit and three consecutive walks.

“If you put your arm in a different arm slot every time, you’re going to put stress on it and it’s not going to be right,’’ Jenks said.

Jenks felt he had succeeded in addressing the flaw.

“I do feel confident that when I do come back everything will be right,’’ he said.

Elbow room Daisuke Matsuzaka, whose regularly scheduled turn in the rotation last night was pushed back to tomorrow after pitching the 13th inning Wednesday, said his right elbow was feeling fine. Matsuzaka left his previous start after four-plus innings because of tightness.

“This time, I feel better than the [elbow] condition from last year,’’ he said.

Asked about his first career relief appearance, Matsuzaka said, “It’s difficult getting ready as a side pitcher and I knew I wouldn’t have enough time to get ready, but all I did was focus on getting ready and throw like regular outings.

Exit sign Francona’s ejection was his second of the season. He also was tossed April 19 at Oakland. Francona has been ejected 31 times in his career . . . J.D. Drew’s solo home run snapped a streak of 14 hitless at-bats and improved him to 5 for 12 for his career (with three extra-base hits) against Twins starter Scott Baker . . . Adrian Gonzalez’s third homer of the season was his second in four games . . . Jacoby Ellsbury went 2 for 4 to extend his hitting streak to 15 games. He’s batting .359 (23 for 64) during the streak.

Michael Vega can be reached at vega@globe.com.

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