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04/17/2012 - 5:32pm
Bobby V: 'No way to know' Youk reaction

Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said before Tuesday's game that he has no idea if there will be a negative carryover from his public comments about Kevin Youkilis on WHDH-TV Sunday. After giving Youkilis the day off on Monday to rest his sore groin, Valentine returned Youkilis to starting lineup on Tuesday, batting him fifth and playing third base. 

"No way to know," Valentine said. "I hope not." 

Valentine questioned Youkilis' emotional state of mind in the interview on Sunday before ending the conversation by saying everyone will eventually see the usual good production from the third baseman. Youkilis requested and received a meeting with Valentine before Monday's game and Dustin Pedroia cleared the air in another meeting with the manager, after he objected with the way he publicly called out Youkilis. 

In other pregame news Tuesday, Valentine said Carl Crawford made four plate appearances in an extended...

04/17/2012 - 3:26pm
Youkilis back hitting fifth vs. Rangers

After a day off to rest his groin on Monday, Kevin Youkilis returns to the lineup on Tuesday against the Texas Rangers and Colby Lewis. Youkilis is 2-for-9 with a pair of doubles against Lewis. Adrian Gonzalez is worth watching against Lewis, as he owns incredible numbers against the right-hander in limited at-bats. In eight plate appearances between the two, Gonzalez has reached base seven times, going 6-for-7 with a walk, two homers and a double.

Jarrod Saltalamacchia will get the start behind the plate for pitcher Jon Lester, who will be looking for his first win of the year.

For complete matchup information, click here. For team coverage, visit weei.com/redsox.

RED SOX LINEUP

Aviles, SS
Pedroia, 2B
Gonzalez, 1B
Ortiz, DH
...

04/17/2012 - 3:09pm
O's claim Exposito from Sox on waivers

The Orioles claimed 25-year-old catcher Luis Exposito off waivers from the Red Sox. Exposito was taken in the 31st round of the 2005 draft, then signed shortly before the 2006 draft as the last player whom the Sox acquired through the now-defunct draft-and-follow process. He showed good defensive tools and significant right-handed raw power, but struggled against more advanced pitching in the upper levels, with a .241/.297/.368/.665 line in Triple-A over the last two seasons. Exposito was called up twice in the 2011 season by the Red Sox when there was a need for emergency catching depth, but never entered a game. With both Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Kelly Shoppach in the majors, Ryan Lavarnway in Triple-A and Dan Butler (who seemingly surpassed Exposito on the organizational depth chart during spring training) in Double-A, Exposito was taken off the 40-man roster this weekend when the Sox needed to clear a pair of roster spots for Nate Spears and Jason Repko....

04/17/2012 - 1:55pm
Allen set to return for Celtics in New York

After missing the last four games with what the team is calling a sore ankle  -- and 10 of the previous 15 -- Ray Allen is set to return for the Celtics in their game against the Knicks on Tuesday. That's according to coach Doc Rivers who told reporters at the team's shootaround that Allen should be able to play with no limitations.

The Celtics went 3-1 without Allen and have won eight of the 10 games he's missed recently, which coincided with Avery Bradley's insertion into the starting lineup. Allen has given the team's bench a much-needed jolt of scoring in his new role with 52 points in his four games as the team's sixth man, a run that included wins over Indiana, Philadelphia and Miami.

For more Celtics news, visit the team page at weei.com/celtics.


04/17/2012 - 1:31pm
Hunter: Bruins targeting Backstrom's head
By: DJ Bean

WASHINGTON -- Capitals coach Dale Hunter said Tuesday that he feels theBruins are targeting Washington center Nicklas Backstrom's head. Backstrom missed 40 games this season due to a concussion.

“Every scrum, Nicky comes out with no helmet on, he gets blockered to the head by [Tim] Thomas the game before. He's protecting his head,” Hunter told reporters. “He just came out for 40 games. You have to protect your head. With his stick being in his face like that, it was a dangerous play on his part.”'

Backstrom has a hearing with the league on Wednesday for his cross-check to the face of Rich Peverley at the end of Game 3. Hunter said he doesn't think Backstrom will be suspended because Peverley's stick was "up in his face first."

"He's got to protect himself," Hunter said of Backstrom. "If you get a second concussion, you're out a long time. If it wasn't there, if a stick wasn't in his face...

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