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Red Sox Notebook

Poor sight leads Drew to sit

Black eye caused by foul ball in BP

The Pirates got only a sacrifice fly out of this sinking liner caught by Jacoby Ellsbury in center. The Pirates got only a sacrifice fly out of this sinking liner caught by Jacoby Ellsbury in center. (Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press)
By Peter Abraham
Globe Staff / June 27, 2011

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PITTSBURGH — J.D. Drew has been knocked out of games with sore hamstrings, knees, feet, and even cases of vertigo during his five seasons with the Red Sox. Yesterday, a black eye got him.

Drew fouled a ball off his face while bunting in the batting cage before the 4-2 victory against Pittsburgh. He played the first inning and then left because of vision problems.

“He’s got a pretty good shiner,’’ said manager Terry Francona, who doesn’t expect the issue to linger.

Drew struck out looking with two runners on to end the first. He did not make himself available to media after the game.

Darnell McDonald replaced Drew in right field and was 0 for 4, leaving seven men on base. McDonald is 5 for 46 (.109) this season and 2 for 25 since coming off the disabled list.

He has one extra-base hit this season and three RBIs.

“I’ve had good at-bats I have nothing to show for it,’’ said McDonald, who hit .270 last year. “I’ve also had bad at-bats. But I’m going to keep battling and sooner or later I’ll get some things going. It’s very frustrating. It seems like every time I come up there are men on base and I want to get the job done.’’

McDonald faced his first cousin, Pirates starter James McDonald, for the first time. He was 0 for 2 against him.

“I’m happy to see him doing well,’’ the Sox outfielder said. “It was interesting to face him. I thought he was going to throw me all fastballs. I need to get on him about that.’’

Jenks near return Righthanded reliever Bobby Jenks will join the team in Philadelphia and is expected to be activated from the disabled list tomorrow. He has been out since June 8 with a strained intercostal muscle on the left side of his back.

Jenks threw an inning for Double A Portland on Saturday night and had good velocity and command.

“We didn’t think he thought like he needed an extended period as long as he felt good,’’ Francona said.

Jenks has appeared in just 15 games this season because of injuries and has a 6.57 earned run average. The Sox still believe he can be a significant member of the bullpen.

“The last time when we activated him, we got a couple of outings when you could kind of see how good he could do,’’ Francona said. “That’s how we envisioned it.’’

Dusting Dustin The Pirates and Red Sox do not see each other often. But there were some hard feelings when they parted.

James McDonald sent Dustin Pedroia sprawling in the dirt in the fifth inning with a high fastball.

Television cameras then caught Pedroia telling Sox starter Andrew Miller to hit the opposing pitcher. Pedroia also shouted out at McDonald.

Miller didn’t hit McDonald. But he did fire a fastball at the legs of Pirates catcher Eric Fryer in the sixth inning. That spurred plate umpire Greg Gibson to warn both teams. There were no further incidents.

“That’s baseball,’’ Pedroia said. “When you rake, that’s what happens sometimes.’’

Better news Clay Buchholz, who is on the disabled list with a bad back, threw a side session and will repeat that in Philadelphia. He remains on track to return during the next homestand.

“I still feel it some, but it’s getting better,’’ he said.

Francona said the issue now would be rebuilding Buchholz’s endurance.

Carl Crawford, out with a strained left hamstring, took some swings for the first time since going on the disabled list. He is eligible to return next Sunday and hopes that will be the case. The Sox will be in Houston, his hometown.

“I’m making progress,’’ he said. “I’m starting to do more things.’’

Said Francona: “He’s doing well. I think we are concerned because it’s Houston and we know how bad he wants to play there.

“We’re going to be careful. But if he’s healthy, we want him to play. So we’ll see. He’s doing well.’’

Tabata carted off Pittsburgh left fielder Jose Tabata led off the bottom of the first inning with a bunt single and then collapsed after passing first base. He was taken off the field on a cart while strapped to a stretcher. The initial report was that he injured his left quadriceps . . . Pedroia extended his hit streak to 11 games with a single in the first inning . . . Former Sox first baseman Sean Casey, who lives in Pittsburgh, visited the clubhouse with his sons before the game . . . Daniel Bard, who threw a scoreless eighth, has not allowed a run in 13 innings . . . South Carolina outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr., one of the Sox’ supplemental first-round draft picks, is 4 for 14 in the College World Series after missing nearly two months following wrist surgery. The Gamecocks start a best-of-three series with Florida for the NCAA title tonight . . . Yesterday’s game drew 39,511 fans, a record for PNC Park. The series also set a stadium record with 118,324 passing through the gates.

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

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