Wednesday July 07, 2010 | 02:52 AM

With all the talk of the Boston Red Sox injuries, Mike Lowell's hip hardly gets mentioned. That is because Lowell has become a seemingly useless player.

Boston could have used him Tuesday.

With Kevin Youkilis out with an ankle injury (later described as a cramp), the Red Sox had to go with versatile but weak-hitting Niuman Romero. With Romero batting fourth, David Ortiz was walked intentionally three times. Romero made three outs, with at least one runner on base each time (on third base in the ninth inning).

Youkilis told reporters in St. Petersburg that he expects to play today. Maybe the Red Sox can steal a win against David Price after losing two games (one when they knocked out Matt Garza, and the other when Felix Doubront gave them a solid start, allowing only two runs).

The Yankees (52-31) won, by the way and lead Tampa Bay (50-33) by two games, and Boston (49-35) by 3.5.

Pawtucket starter Kris Johnson (3-7, 5.31) kept up his struggles (5 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 2 BB, 3 K), while Tommy Hottovy pitched two innings of scoreless relief (2 H, 3 K).

Salem's Stolmy Pimentel (5-7, 4.61) went 5 2/3 innings (5 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 1 K).

Catcher Dan Butler returned to Greenville from Pawtucket (with Mark Wagner off the DL). Butler looked inspired, going 5-for-6 with a solo home run and four RBI.


About this Blog

Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.

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