TORONTO — Mike Aviles was penciled in at second base for Friday night’s game against the Toronto Blue Jays after Dustin Pedroia remained back in Boston with his family after his wife, Kelli, gave birth to the couple’s second child.
Pedroia left in the seventh inning of Wednesday night’s game against the New York Yankees and was away from the team Thursday due to the birth of his son.
“They’re doing well,” reported Sox manager Bobby Valentine, who declined to divulge the child’s name. “Mom and baby are supposed to be doing well, but I don’t know about Dustin. With no baseball and no sleep? Great combo. He’ll sleep on the plane.”
Without Pedroia, Valentine was left with a lineup that included Aviles at second, where he was making his first start of the season, Jose Iglesias at shortstop, James Loney at first and Pedro Ciriaco at third.
Ivan De Jesus was the only available infielder on the bench for Friday night’s game.
“We have options, we have options,” Valentine said. “But Dustin will be back, we know that.”
In other matters:
• Although league sources indicated there would be no suspensions, Valentine did not acknowledge what discipline Major League Baseball had taken after he, Cody Ross, and third base coach Jerry Royster were ejected by home plate umpire Alfonso Marquez in the ninth inning of of Thursday night’s 2-0 loss to the Yankees. Asked if there were any differences in fines of players and coaches, Valentine said, “They’re not the same. I don’t think so. I don’t know what it’s based on.”
• John Lackey did some flat-ground work at the Rogers Centre in Toronto after he threw 20 pitches of live batting practice Thursday at Fenway Park. “Maybe at the end of Tampa, we might have another BP day, or we might wait until he gets home, depending on the field schedule and his arm,” Valentine said.
Asked if Lackey was due to do an Instructional League stint, Valentine said, “That’s what he’s talked about. He’ll do an Instructional League stint and see about a little competitive action — a couple of innings.”
How encouraging would it be for a guy to get some competitive innings 10 months after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow last Nov. 1?
“Oh, you’d have to ask him, but I think it’d be good for him,” Valentine said. “That’s what his plan has been all summer. I don’t want to speak for him, but it seems like accomplishing something you set out to do would be pretty important for an athlete.”
• After his last outing, a one-inning affair that ranked as the second shortest stint of his career, Daisuke Matsuzaka expressed some lingering concerns about addressing a mechanical flaw that caused an erosion of his confidence and that of the coaching staff in his ability to remain in the starting rotation.
Asked if Matsuzaka had sufficiently addressed those concerns, Valentine said, “We’ll have to see … It’s like three times in a row it’s [Ryan] Lavarnway and he [have worked together] and it’s part of a rhythm cadence for them getting together. Hopefully, it’ll flow better today.”
• Valentine said he called to congratulate Pawtucket manager Arnie Beyeler and pitching coach Rich Sauveur after the PawSox swept Charlotte in three games to win the best-of-five International League’s Governors Cup with a 4-1 road victory. It marked Pawtucket’s first IL title since 1984.
“Called Arnie and Rich, congratulated them and invited them up once their season ends — if it ever ends,” Valentine said. “He’s a good baseball man. I’m really proud of what he’s done. He never complained and gave excellent reports about people he was sending up. Always put his nose down to the grindstone down there [in Pawtucket], made a lot of adjustments with his roster, obviously. Finished by saying he had a lot of great guys who loved to play the game of baseball and that he was lucky. That’s a good thing.”
With the PawSox playing Tuesday in Durham, N.C., against the winner of the Pacific Coast League best-of-five championship series between Reno and Omaha, it was not expected the Sox would receive any reinforcements until then.
“There might be one or two guys who are on the roster who might be coming up,” Valentine said.
Asked if there was any specific area where the team needed help, Valentine said, “Are you kidding? This is the weakest roster we’ve ever had in September in the history of baseball. We could use help everywhere. We’ve got four outfielders and it’s September, yeah. We’ve got four infielders, it’s September — of course. If there are people who could be brought up, we should bring ’em up, but I don’t know that there’s a lot of guys left.”