After missing the entire season with a bout of mononucleosis, Jed Lowrie returns to the Red Sox lineup, playing shortstop and hitting second. With Marco Scutaro getting the day off against left-handed pitcher Gio Gonzalez, Darnell McDonald takes over in the Sox' leadoff spot. Here is the Red Sox' lineup for their series finale against Oakland: McDonald LF, Lowrie SS, Ortiz DH, Youkilis 1B, Beltre 3B, Drew RF, Cameron CF, Hall B, Brown C, Buchholz P.

Red Sox manager Terry Francona made his weekly appearance on the Dale & Holley show and announced that infielder Jed Lowrie will be inserted into the starting lineup for Wednesday's afternoon game vs. the A's in Oakland. "He's going to play shortstop today," Francona stated. He added that he expects to otherwise keep the lineup the same, with the exception of Dusty Brown catching.

 

ESPN baseball insider Jayson Stark talked to the Dale & Holley show Wednesday on what he's heard from around the baseball world as July 31 looms. It seems like every team in contention, including the Red Sox, could look for some bullpen help via a trade, but according to Stark, they're not finding much.

 

Red Sox president/CEO Larry Lucchino talked to the Dennis & Callahan show Wednesday morning, and with the trade deadline fast approaching, one of the biggest topics of conversation was the Red Sox off-the-field plans as they gear up for the final stretch. Lucchino was quick to dismiss any notion that the team will not pursue top trade targets despite recent reports that it has gone above the luxury-tax threshold.

 

One of the biggest Red Sox strengths over the first three months of the season has become a pronounced weakness in July.



The Red Sox plan to activate both starter Clay Buchholz and infielder Jed Lowrie from the disabled list on Wednesday. In order to clear spots on the major league roster for the pair, the team intends to designate first baseman Ryan Shealy for assignment and to option left-hander Dustin Richardson back to Triple-A Pawtucket.

 

The Red Sox appeared in excellent position to make up some ground in the playoff race. Armed with a 4-0 lead after two innings, on a night when both the Yankees and Rays had lost, the Sox were poised to improve their standing relative to both the division and wild card leaders.

 

After being out of the starting linuep in Monday night's 2-1 victory to open this week's series with the Athletics, Mike Cameron will return to the starting lineup and bat seventh as the Red Sox trot Tim Wakefield (3-8, 5.65 earned run average) out against the Athletics and Dallas Braden (4-7, 3.83 ERA). 

 

RED SOX

 

1. Marco Scutaro, SS

2. Darnell McDonald, LF

3. David Ortiz, DH

4. Kevin Youkilis, 1B

5. Adrian Beltre, 3B

6. J.D. Drew, RF

7. Mike Cameron, CF

8. Bill Hall, 2B

Red Sox infielder Jed Lowrie, who has missed the entire season to date while recovering from mononucleosis, will join the major league club in Oakland after a rehab assignment with Single-A Lowell and Triple-A Pawtucket, according to reports out of Oakland. Lowrie is expected to be activated later this week.

 

In 10 games between the two levels on his rehab assignment, Lowrie hit .367 with a .447 OBP, .600 slugging mark, one homer and nine runs batted in. Five of his 11 hits went for extra bases. He played second, short, third and DH during his rehab assignment.

Red Sox starter Tim Wakefield, at 43 years, 352 days, would become the oldest pitcher in franchise history to win a game should he claim a victory in Oakland on Tuesday night. The knuckleballer would surpass the record established by Dennis Eckersley, who claimed a victory in relief at 43 years, 349 days on Sept. 17, 1998.