With six outfielders on the disabled list and Kevin Youkilis coming off the shelf the Red Sox have gotten creative for tonight’s game against the Orioles, shifting Adrian Gonzalez to right field so Youkilis can play first base and Will Middlebrooks can remain at third base.
Gonzalez, Youkilis, and Middlebrooks are batting 4-5-6 in Boston’s lineup versus left-hander Brian Matusz.
Gonzalez is a three-time Gold Glove winner at first base, but he’s previously started five games in right field and the Red Sox are more comfortable using him out there than a banged-up Youkilis. Middlebrooks is hitting .297 with five homers, six doubles, and a .906 OPS in 18 games overall and Boston’s lineup can’t afford to lose another capable bat by sending him back to Triple-A.
NEW YORK — With star outfielder Adam Jones nursing a tender hamstring, the Baltimore Orioles selected the contract of Julio Borbon from Double-A Bowie and optioned pitcher Mike Wright to Triple-A Norfolk.
Borbon was inserted in the starting lineup for Baltimore, batting ninth against hard-throwing New York Yankees rookie Chad Green.
“We had some other center field options,” manager Buck Showalter said. “Borbon is our best option at this point.”
Jones left Friday’s game in the second inning with a left hamstring strain. He departed the previous night’s game at Washington in the ninth inning with hamstring cramps and aggravated the injury hustling down the first base line on a soft grounder to third.
“I got a feeling that if he hadn’t had that first swinging bunt, it might not have been a problem,” Showalter indicated. “He’s not going to trot to first base as much as I talked to him about it before the game.”
Although Jones was unable to talk his way into Saturday’s lineup, Showalter speculated that he might be available to pinch-hit.
The 30-year old Borbon was 2 for 9 in five games with the Orioles earlier this season, but was designated for assignment on July 26. To create room for Borbon on the 40-man roster, pitcher Logan Ondrusek was designated for assignment on Friday.
Good news in Boston: An MRI on Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi‘s left knee revealed no structural damage.
Benintendi slipped while trying to avoid a tag at second base, injuring his leg, but it appears he’s avoided a serious injury. A timetable for his return isn’t known at this point, but the Red Sox expect to get him back before the end of the season.
Benintendi is hitting .324/.365/.485 with a homer and ten RBI in 21 games.