BALTIMORE — It’s a day game after a night game and the 20th game in 20 days for the Red Sox. There was no batting practice on the field but, as always, there are bits of news to report.
Let’s press on:
• Scott Podsednik is starting in center field. It’s his first start in a major league game since Sept. 9, 2010. You have to give the guy credit. He’s 36 and has had a nice 10-year career. But he went back to the minors with three organizations and here he is, back in a major-league lineup.
• Adrian Gonzalez is back in right field. Around 9:15 a.m., Gonzalez was one of a handful of players in the clubhouse (Podsednik, Dustin Pedroia, Josh Beckett were among the others) when Bobby Valentine walked by.
“Is there a lineup?” he asked the manager.
“I was trying to decide where you would play,” Valentine said.
“Play me wherever you want,” Gonzalez said.
If you think that happens with every player of his caliber, guess again.
• Darnell McDonald, on the DL with an oblique strain, took batting practice today for the first time since he was shut down.
• Andrew Bailey has started throwing in Florida and was scheduled to play catch from 60 feet today.
• Carl Crawford, four weeks off his PRP injection, could start swinging a bat this weekend.
• Ryan Kalish is getting in extended spring training games in Florida. He’s still a long ways away from being MLB ready.
• Valentine is reading “Banzai Babe Ruth: Baseball, Espionage, and Assassination During the 1934 Tour of Japan” by Robert K. Fitts. It’s about the MLB All-Stars and their 1934 tour of Japan. Ruth, Lou Gehrig and Jimmie Foxx were on the trip along with Moe Berg, who was spying for the United States.
(Speaking of which, “The Catcher Was a Spy: The Mysterious Life of Moe Berg” by Nicholas Dawidoff is a great book.)
• The public address system as played the B-52s and the Ramones this morning. Remember when John Kiley used to play “Beer Barrel Polka” at Fenway before games?
Back later with updates during the game.