BOSTON –– It took a private meeting from David Ortiz to get everyone’s attention in the clubhouse.
Since then, the Red Sox have won 10 of 13 games and are in position to claim a winning record with a victory over the Rays on Friday night. Through it all, the team has received contributions from unlikely heroes, like Andrew Miller and Daniel Nava.
Before the upcoming seven-game home stand, let’s take a look at this week’s mailbag.
Why is Podsednik playing? First as a [pinch hitter] and now starting at center field?
-Mike Saccardi, Stamford, CT
Have you looked at the disabled list lately, my friend? The Red Sox don’t have any other options, considering Jacoby Ellsbury, Carl Crawford, Cody Ross, Darnell McDonald, Ryan Kalish, Ryan Sweeney and Jason Repko are all shelved.
The team needed to recall Scott Podsednik to provide depth alongside Nava, Marlon Byrd and Che-Hsuan Lin. For that same reason, the team was forced to slot Adrian Gonzalez in right field for a few games.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. To Podsednik’s credit, he has performed well in fill-in duty, clubbing a home run –– his first since Sept. 2010 –– to propel the Red Sox to a victory on Wednesday.
At this point, it seems the best option is Roy Oswalt. The starter has reportedly worked out for the Red Sox and Phillies in the past week and remains under consideration upon getting into shape.
But the Red Sox are still waiting for Aaron Cook and Daisuke Matsuzaka to heal from their respective injuries. Cook had his stitches removed last week and is working to build up strength and conditioning during a minor league rehab assignment.
Matsuzaka, meanwhile, had his clock on the disabled list restarted because of a nagging issue in his right trapezius muscle, which required a cortisone shot. When both come back, they will be welcomed additions and could make the rotation questions very interesting.
Do you think at Fenway, [Will] Middlebrooks would be in the outfield?
-@jetsjets1028, via Twitter
No, I don’t believe so. The Red Sox are already reluctant to play Adrian Gonzalez, who has limited experience playing in the outfield, let alone the complex dimensions of Fenway Park.
I don’t think the team would dare try that with Middlebrooks, who has never even played out there before. If anything the team would likely give Kevin Youkilis a try first, considering Youkilis has at least played 22 career games out there.