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Clay Buchholz responds well to treatment for hamstring

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  February 13, 2013 02:11 PM

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FORT MYERS, Fla. — Clay Buchholz, who strained his right hamstring on Tuesday, played catch Wednesday afternoon and said he felt much better.

"It was a little sore when I woke up. But once I came in and the trainers started getting into it, it improved a lot," Buchholz said. "They said that the inflamed area is about 50 percent smaller than it was yesterday."

Manager John Farrell concurred.

"Good day for Clay Buchholz," Farrell said. "He's responded favorably to treatment. Range of motion is good; strength is good. He still has some sensation in a smaller spot, more localized than [Tuesday] ... An encouraging day for him."

Also:

• Mike Napoli will have a follow-up MRI on his hips on Thursday as part of his physical. If he is cleared, he can begin to start working out in the field. For now, he has been limited to playing catch and taking batting practice.

The process could take a few days. Red Sox doctors will evaluate the test, as will the specialist Napoli is seeing.

"Once it’s reviewed, then there will be a work plan laid out, not only volume, but the type of work that will follow from that point," Farrell said.

• Jacoby Ellsbury arrived in Fort Myers on Monday. But he has yet to work out on the field. According to Farrell, Ellsbury is working on the right shoulder he injured last April 13.

"He'll be on the field tomorrow," Farrell said. "He's come in and gotten some work done on the continued strengthening of his shoulder. That's part of the general maintenance."

Ellsbury has not made himself available to the media, unlike all of the other players in camp.

• Felix Doubront played catch from 75 feet and will push out to 90 and 120 feet on Thursday. The Sox are building him up slowly because of a sore left shoulder.

• The Sox had Daniel Nava and Mitch Maier, who are outfielders, taking grounders at first base. That will continue, Farrell said. The Sox are looking for a lefthanded hitter off their bench, ideally one that can play left field and first base.

Lyle Overbay, a first baseman might start working in the outfield.

• According to a major league source, the Sox have internally discussed Mike Carp, who was designated for assignment by the Mariners on Tuesday. Carp is a lefthanded-hitting first baseman with 52 games of experience in left field.

• Bob Tewksbury, the team's sports psychology coach, will have an expanded role this season, according to Farrell. There have been "mental skills classes" each day for the pitchers. Those meetings, Farrell said, are position-specific.

Tewksbury, Farrell said, will be around the team more than previous seasons and take some road trips. The plan is for 85 days, Farrell said.

"When we have a resource such as Tewks, to not use it, to not incorporate it more, we're not giving the players everything that they can take advantage of," Farrell said.

Tewksbury pitched in the majors for 13 years. He then earned a Master’s degree in sports psychology and counseling from Boston University.

• Farrell was asked about John Lackey previously looking "lumpy" and how he's lost weight. Lackey has lost 17 pounds, although it looks like more.

"He smoothed the lumps out," Farrell said.

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