Ortiz should be ready for start of season

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Designated hitter David Ortiz is still recovering from a strained right Achilles’ tendon and may be slowed for a portion of camp. But Red Sox manager John Farrell expects he will be ready for Opening Day.

“He’s still going through some agility work and some rehab with the Achilles,” Farrell said Friday. “That’s one of the areas that the workload and the volume of it will be monitored.”

Farrell said the extent of that would be determined once the medical staff gets a look at Ortiz in person.

“How we get [to Opening Day], that might take some initial adjustment along the way,” Farrell said.


Ortiz was injured last July 16 and played only one game the rest of the season, that coming on Aug. 24 when he re-injured his foot and was returned to the disabled list.

Some other notes from camp:

• New first baseman Mike Napoli is scheduled to arrive here on Saturday. Despite a hip condition that led to a reduction of the contract he originally agreed to, Napoli is fully cleared to play.

“He talks very confidently of how he feels,’’ Farrell said. “The work he’s gone through; he’s on a treadmill now running. Even though it’s a modified treadmill to reduce overall some weight impact, he’s back running. And watching him hit, there is no restrictions on his lower half.”

Farrell said that Napoli would not be doing any catching, however. The Red Sox will be careful not to place any unneeded stress on his hips.

• Pedro Martinez spent some time on the field speaking in Spanish to young pitchers Felix Doubront and Rubby De La Rosa while they played catch. He then stood behind a fence in the bullpen and unobtrusively watched several other pitchers throw.

For even veteran major leaguers, seeing Martinez around the team is a thrill.


“I met him today for the first time,” reliever Andrew Bailey said. “I was actually talking to somebody in the hallway when he came out a side door. I was like, ‘Pedro Martinez, there he is.’ It was pretty cool.”

Bailey is eager to get to know Martinez.

“His presence, just being around … the carefree mentality, just having fun is great, especially at this time of the year. During camp everyone is like that,” Bailey said.

“I think any baseball fan can appreciate what he did and what he meant to the game. The numbers that he put up are just ridiculous.”

Farrell said Martinez has a generally undefined job description. He’ll be free to contribute in different ways.

“It’s kind of an open book right now,” Farrell said. “The one thing that’s great about Pedro is that he has been an open book for us in wanting and willing to give that experience and that guidance in any way he can. He’s respectful not only of the coaching staff but the structure that’s in place. We’ve got a very good resource to tap into.”

• Farrell said 30 players, roughly half the spring training roster, have reported. “It speaks to the overall eagerness that we’ve touched on from time to time and guys wanting to get after it and get ready for the start of the season,” the manager said. Righthanded reliever Junichi Tazawa, who could earn a prominent role in the bullpen, arrived on Friday.


• There will be an informal workout for players on Saturday, but only meetings among the coaches on Sunday. Physicals will take place on Monday with the first official workout for pitchers and catchers on Tuesday.

• Farrell said he wants the main group of starting pitchers to make seven starts in spring training.

• Several Red Sox are caught in the snowstorm hitting the northeast. Franklin Morales left Florida to return to Connecticut and may be delayed. Joel Hanrahan and Will Middlebrooks are hunkered down in Boston. Bullpen catcher Mani Martinez also is trying to escape the blizzard.

• Alfredo Aceves, Farrell said, will be a starter for Mexico in the WBC.

• GM Ben Cherington said there are no plans to add to the roster before the official start of camp on Tuesday. “I’m not closing the door to it. But nothing is on the front burner,” he said.

• Jarrod Saltalamacchia had the existential question of the day: “Where does a Floridian go to retire?”

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