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Red Sox Notebook

Buchholz may be set back

Soreness in back is now a concern

By Peter Abraham
Globe Staff / June 5, 2011

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Red Sox manager Terry Francona and pitching coach Curt Young met with Clay Buchholz yesterday to discuss the merits of pushing back his next start because of lingering back soreness.

Francona said an announcement would come today. But Buchholz said he is planning to make his next start as scheduled, Wednesday against the Yankees.

“Right now that’s the plan,’’ he said after the Sox beat the Athletics, 9-8, in 14 innings at Fenway Park.

Buchholz complained of back pain after facing the Tigers last Sunday, and Friday night he said it was on his mind as he pitched against the Athletics. He allowed eight earned runs over 10 2/3 innings in the two games.

“It didn’t hurt, but I think it was on his mind that maybe it was going to hurt,’’ Francona said. “He kept wondering if he’d get to a certain point if it was going to grab at him.’’

Tim Wakefield threw a bullpen session yesterday to prepare for a possible start Wednesday.

Buchholz is 4-3 with a 3.82 ERA. He has faced the Yankees twice this season, going 1-1 and allowing six earned runs in 10 2/3 innings.

Lackey goes today John Lackey will come off the disabled list today to make his first start since May 11. He has been out with a sore elbow.

Lackey threw 63 pitches over 5 2/3 innings in a rehab start for Pawtucket Tuesday. Francona is hoping for “90ish’’ pitches from the righthander today.

“We don’t want to overdo because he’s coming back from an elbow problem,’’ said Francona. “I think you can make a mistake and come back too quick and do too much.’’

Lackey is 2-5 with an 8.01 ERA in seven starts. The Sox hope to see an improvement in his ability to keep the ball down after the stint on the DL and a cortisone shot.

Scutaro starts up Marco Scutaro started a rehab assignment with Pawtucket last night in Durham, N.C., and went 1 for 4 with a run. He is expected to play three games there before rejoining the team in New York tomorrow night.

Scutaro has not played since May 7 because of a strained muscle on the left side of his rib cage. The Sox want him to start one game at shortstop, one at second base, and one as the designated hitter. He was the shortstop last night.

Darnell McDonald, also on a rehab assignment, went 2 for 4 with a home run and three RBIs.

A pinch hitter Alley Jablonski of Winston Conn., and George Couture of Cumberland, R.I., planned to get married yesterday and hold their reception at Fenway for what was originally scheduled to be a night game.

But when the Sox moved the game to the afternoon to accommodate fans who wanted to watch Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final, Alley and George changed their plans, too. They were married at 9 a.m. and headed for Fenway and the right-field roof deck to celebrate.

Cause is joined The Sox will join the Giants, Cubs, and other teams in producing an “It Gets Better’’ video to campaign against anti-gay bullying and homophobia . . . On a day when the park was full of fans wearing Bruins jerseys, it was only fitting that Ken Hodge threw out the first pitch along with son, Ken Hodge Jr. Hodge played for the Bruins from 1967-76, his son from 1990-92 . . . Oakland’s Hideki Matsui snapped a career-long 0-for-19 skid with a single in the 11th inning . . . The Sox had seven doubles, a season high.

Undecided Josh Beckett has six no-decisions in 12 starts this season and pitched well enough to win five of those games. “I don’t give a [expletive] about that,’’ he said. “I do not have an arbitration case in February. That stuff doesn’t matter to me.’’ . . . Jacoby Ellsbury matched his career high with four hits. He is 15 of 41 (.366) in the last 10 games with seven RBIs and nine runs . . . Alfredo Aceves, who went four innings for the win, has won each of his last 12 decisions when pitching in relief. He is 17-2 in his career . . . General manager Theo Epstein, scouting director Amiel Sawdaye, and other team officials worked out a number of amateur players on the field after the game in preparation for the draft, which starts tomorrow.

Peter Abraham can be reached at pabraham@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @peteabe.

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