Team-first Edwin Jackson would accept bullpen duty
By DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN firstname.lastname@example.org May 31, 2011 11:40PM
Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek backs up the cutoff throw as Brent Morel scores in the fourth inning. | Elise Amendola~AP
Updated: July 8, 2011 2:03PM
BOSTON — If and when the Sox go back to a five-man rotation, somebody is not going to be pleased. Namely, the starter who gets shipped to the bullpen.
“I don’t know one starter who would say he’d be happy,’’ Sox right-hander Edwin Jackson said. “But it’s one of those things where you do what you have to do.’’
Based on performance, John Danks (0-8, 5.25 ERA) would be the one moved out of the rotation, although he has pitched well enough to win a handful of games and was a 15-game winner last season. But the Sox have three lefties in the pen. Jackson (4-5, 4.63) has experience pitching in relief.
“It’s a game of adjustments,’’ Jackson said, smiling. “I mean, what can you do if you have to go to the pen? There’s nobody who wants to go to the pen. I’ve done both. I’ve been in the pen. I like starting and see myself as a starter, but a lot of starters have had both roles.
“At the end of the day, it wouldn’t necessarily be about me. It would be about the team. I would like to stay starting — I’m comfortable starting — but if I have to go to the pen, I’d just go down and deal with it.’’
Mark Buehrle will start Friday, when the Sox open a homestand against Detroit, but the starters for Saturday and Sunday haven’t been announced with the rotation decisions to be made. Jackson and Danks are scheduled to pitch, but manager Ozzie Guillen gave no hints.
“Not yet, we’re going to wait and see how we’re going to handle it,’’ Guillen said. “After the day off, we’re going to figure out who’s going to be back and forth. I have it there in the back of my mind. I don’t know.’’
A roster move will be made before the Sox, who are carrying 13 pitchers, open the homestand. Mark Teahen will return from a rehab assignment soon.
Jesse Crain, who left Monday’s game after getting struck by a batted ball, had a softball-sized mark above his right hip but was OK, he said.
“Hit me in the right spot,’’ Crain said.
Guillen kept him out of Tuesday’s game because of his busy recent workload.