Today I asked manager Torey Lovullo if he was a Star Trek fan.  He looked at me quizzically.  I quickly explained my analogy.  The PawSox are the Starship Enterprise.  Torey is Captain James Tiberius Kirk and everything the Sox are doing these days is done in “warp speed.”  Examples?  Dusty Brown being taken off the disabled list and being “fasttracked” to Boston.  Michael Bowden being switched to a reliever from a starter and being promoted on Sunday.  Bowden, by the way retired the Rangers in order in the ninth, with 2 strikeouts in his first M.L. appearance in 2010.  Lovullo bought into my theory, almost embracing it.  “I think it’s a good analogy.  In Dustys’ case, he was needed, they wanted to see what he could do, and out of necessity they came and got him.  Was he 100% ready? He was pretty close.  That’s just the way this year has been going.  Everything has been going pretty quickly.   The conversations we have with the front office are quick and swift.  They move at a pretty good pace because they have to.  We’ve been very proud of the reinforcements we’ve sent them.  Hopefully the pace will slow down..”

     As far as Michael Bowden is concerned, Lovullo has no worries.  “I couldn’t be more pleased.  He is going to get some great opportunities coming out of the bullpen.  The more he continues to shine and blossom, the more chances he’ll get in the Big Leagues.  What we’re tryng to do, is give Michael a little bit of diversity.  Boston’s strength is their starting five and with Beckett and Buchholz returning, the best chance for Michael to help the Red Sox is to shift him to the bullpen.  His day will come.  He’s going to be a good Major Leaguer whether it’s as a starter or coming out of the pen.”  

     Torey doesn’t think the Red Sox are pushing the panic button and he agrees that the Sox wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize a players’ health, but he realizes this time of year is not for the faint of heart.  “Like you said, everything is at warp speed.  It’s the dog days, the dog days of baseball and they need some healthy bodies that are going to contribute at a championship level.  At times you can rush a guy, but under no circumstances would we do it for example with Dusty Brown if we didn’t think his hand was ready.  If he couldn’t catch 100 pitches in a game.  Desparate?  Maybe.  Moving quickly? Definitely.  These are the right pieces of the puzzle and we need to get them in there as quickly as possible.”    

     Torey also recognizes the travails of talented Jed Lowrie.  The Sox could use a middle infielder who can hit and Lowrie fills the bill.  Could Boston try to hurry his progress?  “He’s had a tough run of it.  He’s been through the wringer” Lovullo said sympathetically. He quickly added “He’s exactly where he should be right now.  He’s healthy, he is strong, his spirit is good and I think that is the most important thing for Jed, because when he is on, he’s a pretty spectacular player.”

     These days in the “nation” you really have to pay attention.  As the old saying goes…”you can’t tell the players without a scorecard.”




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