Pedroia to Return to Red Sox Thursday

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When Dustin Pedroia returns to the Red Sox lineup that already features David Ortiz — Big Papi himself — will that make Pedroia "Little Papi?" Come Thursday, Red Sox Nation will find out.

Manager Terry Francona announced that the Red Sox second baseman will return to the club on Thursday in Toronto for the series finale against the Blue Jays.

Pedroia was sent home prior to the first game of the series to be with his wife Kelli, who was giving birth to their first child, Dylan. Both Kelli and Dylan checked out of the hospital on Wednesday afternoon around 1:30 p.m.

"He knows if something were to change that we don’t anticipate, he can always change that," Francona told the Boston Globe. "But he anticipates being here for [Thursday]’s game."

Dylan was delivered on Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 7 pounds, 20 1/2 inches.

"It's good," said first baseman Kevin Youkilis. "I think it's great for him after everything she's been through, Dustin's been through mentally. It's going to be a great thing for Dustin."

Utility infielder Nick Green has filled in for Pedroia at second base. Green went 1-for-5 with two runs scored on Tuesday night. In five starts at second base this season (heading into Wednesday night's game), Green has been perfect, making 10 putouts and 15 assists in 25 chances. Right-fielder J.D. Drew filled in for Pedie in the second slot on Tuesday, grabbing one hit in four at-bats.

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