Kevin Youkilis to Return to Game Action, Will Start Off as Designated Hitter With Pawtucket

Kevin Youkilis to Return to Game Action, Will Start Off as Designated Hitter With PawtucketBOSTON – Kevin Youkilis is making his return to the Sox — the PawSox that is.

Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said the team plans to ease the third baseman into the fold by getting him a few at-bats as a designated hitter in Pawtucket, starting on Wednesday. The PawSox will take on the Durham Bulls in Durham, N.C. at 7:05 p.m.

"We're going to try to get him at least three at-bats as a DH. He looked really good taking his ground balls today –– moving around, bounce in his step," Valentine said. "So he'll start [Wednesday] and get him enough –- whatever it's going to take to have him to say that he feels good. He'll go from DH to playing the field."

Youkilis, who has two homers and nine RBIs in 18 games this season, hasn't played since April 28. During his absence, rookie Will Middlebrooks has flourished, blasting four long balls and 13 RBIs heading into Tuesday's game.

Youkilis will be reunited with Daisuke Matsuzaka, who will be starting for the PawSox in the upcoming series against the Bulls.

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