DUNEDIN, Fla – Red Sox manager John Farrell said designated hitter David Ortiz would continue taking swings in the cage, but no timetable on when he would restart his running program as he continues to recover from his heel injuries.
Other topics Farrell touched on Friday:
Ryan Lavarnway: "Consistent footwork, consistent receiving. I think his throwing – when compared to what we saw last September – I think dramatically improved and yet he would benefit by more regular play back there. We're trying to rotate guys. To me he's done a good job handling our staff and he's probably at the point where he needs more regular at-bats as well."
Lyle Overbay, who has an opt-out looming: "But not anymore important than the whole camp has been and he's done well. We're going to take every day we can to make the decisions on how our bench is going to round out. He's a proven big-leaguer and a dependable major-league player. You look at every player's strength and match them up in combination with others. A veteran presence whose been in that role and has been accustomed to it. How the group compliments each other is how we'll settle it."
How Opening Day is shaping up without David Ortiz, Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez: "Both teams have gone through change. A lot of temporary situations because of injury. I'm sure everyone who pays attention to every opening series, you want to see the marquee players perform on the field. In both cases we're dealing with banged up rosters."
On looking forward to playing the Blue Jays the second series of the season in Toronto: "There's been a lot of change with Toronto. They've got a damned good team, one that everyone will be shooting for this year in terms of trying to compete and contend in this division. We're looking forward to every game played and series, no matter where it is."
On the negative attention focused on him in Toronto: "There may be, we'll soon find out. But this game is always about the players first and foremost and that's where the attention should be."
On the way bench coach Torey Lovullo has run the camp: "He's very capable. Smart mind. A lot of good conversation on and off the field, a good communicator and he's run a damned good camp."