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Pre-game notes from Safeco Field

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  July 22, 2010 08:30 PM

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As always, plenty going on with the Sox:

* Victor Martinez caught Tm Wakefield's bullpen session today and will catch Clay Buchholz on Saturday. They took apart his mitt and strengthened the area around his thumb. It wouldn't be a shock were he ready to play in Anaheim.

* Terry Francona said that he planned to platoon Darnell McDonald and Jeremy Hermida in left field.

* Tim Wakefield is headed for the bullpen and would be available on Saturday at the earliest. He will not be used situationally, but more as a long reliever/spot starter type.

* Dustin Pedroia hit today and did some strengthening drills. He'll get checked out on Monday in Los Angeles by Dr. Lewis Yocum. Once he's cleared to play, he'll want to play the next day. It may not be that fast, but it'll be fast.

* Jacoby Ellsbury took BP on the field in Fort Myers yesterday, took today off and will hit again tomorrow. He started a hitting program on July 10 that is supposed to take roughly two weeks to get a player ready for games. Francona said it's possible Ellsbury will be ready in minor-league games in four or five days.

* Adrian Beltre, who spent 2005-09 with Seattle, was a popular interview subject before the game doing sessions with two sets of beat writers. He said the fans in Seattle are "more forgiving" than they are in Boston. But at Fenway, he said the fans are more attuned to the game.

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