BOSTON — Dustin Pedroia, who is dealing with left knee soreness, is scheduled to play second base twice this week for Triple-A Pawtucket after being the DH in two games, which would give him four straight starts.

Pedroia went 1 for 4 on Sunday.

“That’s four in a row but he was DH twice,” Red Sox Manager Alex Cora said. “We need him to play second.”

• Boston catcher Sandy Leon is due back from paternity leave Monday after his wife gave birth to a daughter.

ASTROS: Outfielder George Springer left the game against Boston in the fifth inning with lower back stiffness.

Springer, who entered the day leading the American League with 17 homers, took three big swings in the first and struck out against Chris Sale. On the second and third swings, Springer appeared to reach briefly for the lower right side of his back.

Springer also struck out swinging in his next two at-bats – in the second and fourth – before being removed.

CUBS: Chicago dropped its protest over the pitching delivery of Washington reliever Sean Doolittle.

Maddon came out twice in the ninth inning of a 5-2 loss Saturday night to complain to plate umpire Sam Holbrook about Doolittle. Maddon said he believed the left-handed Doolittle was tapping his right toe on the ground before coming to the plate.

After being told Doolittle’s delivery was legal, Maddon announced the Cubs were playing the game under protest.

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