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DiNardo on call

Posted by Gordon Edes, Globe Staff  April 28, 2006 05:12 PM

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Sox manager Terry Francona, having used up his bullpen the last two nights in Cleveland, said Lenny DiNardo is on call tonight in the event he has to go to his pen early in relief of Matt Clement.

DiNardo is scheduled to start Saturday. If he pitches in relief tonight, the Sox would summon Matt Ginter from Pawtucket to pitch tomorrow night. Ginter is a non-roster player, so that would require Sox GM Theo Epstein to make a move on the 40-man roster.

Ginter is a 28-year-old righthander who was a No 1 pick of the White Sox in '99, then was traded five years later to the Mets in a spring training deal for outfielder Timo Perez. He made 14 starts for the Mets in '04, with a 1-3 record, was dealt to the Tigers a couple days into the '05 season, which he split between Toledo and the Tigers.

Ginter would be the likely candidate to replace DiNardo in the rotation if he has a rough start tomorrow, though he has pitched better than 0-1, 7.43 ERA would suggest.

The D-Rays skipped batting practice after arriving home late from New York City last night. The Sox also didn't get in until 2:45 a.m.

The D-Rays, of course, intend to use what Joe Maddon jokingly calls his 3-4 defense against David Ortiz, stacking his outfield with six fielders. "Until they give an usher a glove, he's still going to hit people,'' Terry Francona said.

Pawtucket yesterday activated catcher Ken Huckaby, who had been on the 7-day DL after being struck in the hand by a bat. Huckaby is a possible option if the Sox decide Josh Bard can't handle Tim Wakefield's knuckleball.

Roger Rubin of the NY Daily News is the first New York writer to appear in advance of the Yankees' visit to Fenway on Monday.

Asked if he expected Johnny Damon to seek him out on the field or vice versa, Francona said: "Johnny knows how I feel about him, that I love him, but I don't have to show that in front of everybody on the field.''

When someone mentioned that Damon has expressed the hope that he doesn't get booed in Boston, Francona said: "He spent a long time in Boston, you just don't throw that away. I'm sure it'll be mixed. It probably depends on how the game goes. Shoot, if we play bad, they'll probably boo everybody.''

Here are the lineups tonight:

Red Sox
1. Kevin Youkilis, 1B
2. Mark Loretta, 2B
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Manny Ramirez, LF
5. Jason Varitek, C
6. Mike Lowell, 3B
7. Trot Nixon, RF
8. Wily Mo Pena, CF
9. Alex Gonzalez, SS
Matt Clement, SP

Devil Rays
1. Joey Gathright, CF
2. Carl Crawford, LF
3. Jonny Gomes, RF
4. Ty Wigginton, 2B
5. Toby Hall, C
6. Greg Norton, DH
7. Travis Lee, 1B
8. Sean Burroughs, 3B
9. Tomas Perez, SS
Casey Fossum, SP

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