PITTSBURGH – Boston Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett’s next start was pushed back to help him recover from an illness that left him bedridden earlier this week.

Veteran knuckleballer Tim Wakefield will start in Beckett’s spot today against the Pittsburgh Pirates, with Beckett not taking the mound again until Tuesday when the Red Sox travel to Philadelphia. Andrew Miller will face the Pirates on Sunday.

Boston Manager Terry Francona said Friday that Beckett felt well enough to pitch this weekend but “it wasn’t in his best interest.”

Francona said the delay will allow Beckett to go through his normal preparation before facing the NL East-leading Phillies.

Beckett is 6-2 with a 1.86 ERA, the best in the American League. 

THE RED SOX recalled right-handed reliever Scott Atchison from Triple-A Pawtucket and sent pitcher Michael Bowden back to the minors.

It will be the third stint for Atchison, 35, with the Red Sox this season. He has a 4.73 ERA in seven relief appearances, and has appeared in 103 games over five seasons with Seattle, San Francisco and Boston.

Atchison was available for Friday night’s interleague game against Pittsburgh, but did not pitch.

Bowden has been solid out of the bullpen for Boston this season with a 1.29 ERA in six appearances.

He has a career record of 2-2 with a 5.82 ERA.

 


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