Ortiz starts playing in games on Monday

TORONTO — Red Sox DH David Ortiz, who is on the disabled list recovering from a right Achilles’ tendon injury, will play in an extended spring training game in Fort Myers on Monday and could start a rehabilitation assignment with Triple A Pawtucket as soon as Thursday.

Pawtucket starts an eight-game homestand on Thursday. Ortiz has said he would like 25-30 at-bats at Pawtucket before returning to the Sox.

Let’s say that’s six or seven games. Barring any setbacks, that would have Ortiz with the Red Sox by April 17 or 18.

Keep in mind that this process will hinge on how Ortiz feels on a given day. Theoretically he could play nine or 10 in a row and declare himself ready to go. But he also could mix in a day off or two in there.



• Shortstop Stephen Drew will remain with Double A Portland for two more days and rejoin the Red Sox on Wednesday. The Sea Dogs had their game postponed by cold weather on Saturday and Drew would like to get two days of at-bats before returning to the majors.

Drew has had seven plate appearances with Portland in two games.

• John Lackey is back in Boston and getting checked out this morning. The Sox are hoping to get some news during the game.

• Jose Bautista (right ankle) remains out of the Toronto lineup.

• Bobby Doerr, the Hall of Fame second baseman and Red Sox legend, is 95 today.

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