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Pregame: Red Sox Vs. Braves

Posted by Ben Collins, Today's Soundtrack  June 20, 2009 04:31 PM

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Mike Lowell will receive a day off today against the Braves and might miss tomorrow's series finale.

"Mike is feeling a little beat up," said Manager Terry Francona. "He might get two days off in a row. We messed around with (that idea) and we'll see how he feels tomorrow."

Francona said he'll sit down with Lowell to discuss the ailments.

"He's a tough guy, though," he said. "He plays through everything."

Mark Kotsay will start at first base in place of Lowell today. Kevin Youkilis will slide to third.

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Francona said he had just been looking at Dustin Pedroia's stats in the leadoff spot, where he is batting .188 with only two extra-base hits in 69 at bats.

"I was just looking at that today," he said. "It was a surprise to see that."

Pedroia is batting .328 with 16 extra base hits in 189 at bats when batting second in the order. Pedroia took over for Jacoby Ellsbury in the leadoff spot on May 31st. Ellsbury, who dropped to seventh in the lineup, was two games removed from a 22-game hitting streak at the time.

"I don't think he changes his approach at all," he says. "It's not like we were moving this young guy from ninth to first. We moved the MVP from second to first."

Ellsbury is hitting .294 from the 7th spot. His average was .299 when leading off.

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