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Pre-game notes from Yankee Stadium

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  September 23, 2011 05:25 PM

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NEW YORK Terry Francona announced that John Lackey will pitch on Sunday against Ivan Nova. The manager said he talked to a lot of different people and that he felt starting Lackey was "the right thing to do."

Also:

Clay Buchholz threw two simulated innings inside. The first was 17 pitches without the hitters swinging. The second inning was 23 pitches with the hitters swinging. Francona said the next step for Buchholz would be to pitch in a game. That would probably be Monday at the earliest.

It would be in relief.

J.D. Drew was going to go through a full batting practice today inside. Kevin Youkilis was set to swing at balls off a tee. No word on whether either of them will return this season.

Fracona addressed rumors about his job security by saying the team has the right to do whatever it wants and that he does him no good to concern himself with it.

"I don't feel any different than I ever have," Francona said "The organization not only has the right, but it's their obligation to get the right person they think is the best, if at some point they think it needs to be somebody else. Other than that, I think it's disrespectful to spend one waking moment thinking about my situation. We need to win games."

Theo Epstein also spoke to reporters. More to come on that shortly.

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