BOSTON -- The Red Sox will soon have a decision to make on right-hander Boof Bonser, whose Minor League rehab assignment expires Saturday. Bonser, who didn't pitch at all last year because of labrum and rotator cuff surgery, started this season on the disabled list with groin tightness. Bonser began the season on a rehab assignment at Triple-A Pawtucket, but was shut down on April 13 with fatigue in his shoulder.
The righty restarted his rehab on May 7. He has allowed just one run over his last 13 innings. Bonser's next turn for Pawtucket should come Friday, after which the Red Sox will huddle and either put Bonser on their roster or perhaps be forced to move him out of the organization.
"He threw the ball pretty well [recently]," Red Sox manaager Terry Francona said. "[Pawtucket manager] Torey [Lovullo] has been real impressed. Again, there's been some ups and downs, but when he's able to go out and compete and he's healthy, he's actually a pretty good pitcher, which we know."
No excuses from Bogar after tough calls
BOSTON -- There was no hiding the fact that Thursday afternoon was a tough day for Red Sox third-base coach Tim Bogar. Under his watch, two runners -- both of whom were at less than 100 percent physically -- were thrown out at the plate for the first out of an inning.
If the rest of the game had transpired in different fashion, perhaps Bogar would not have drawn a bigger media crowd than any of the players in the clubhouse after the game. But being that it is Boston, and the Red Sox lost the game, 9-8, all eyes were on Bogar.
He stood there patiently and answered every question, and made no excuses.
"They were two decisions I made that didn't go our way," Bogar said. "Obviously I should have learned from the first one. I'm confident in what I'm doing. I'm confident in my decision-making. I feel like I do a good job over there. Today is one of those days where I made two decisions that went the wrong way."
A highly regarded coach, this is the first season that Bogar has coached third base. He was moved from first to third as part of a coaching shuffle that transpired when Brad Mills took the job as Astros manager and DeMarlo Hale moved from the third-base box to become manager Terry Francona's bench coach.
In the third inning, Victor Martinez, who has been battling a bruised big toe, was given the green light by Bogar to try to score all the way from first on a double to left by Kevin Youkilis. Martinez was tagged on the shoulder by catcher Kurt Suzuki before he crossed home.
An inning later, Darnell McDonald reached on an infield single and then jammed his right knee diving back on a pickoff throw. But he stayed in the game, and was thrown out trying to score from second on a Jeremy Hermida single.
"I think the first play was a pretty good play by the catcher," Bogar said. "[Cliff] Pennington's got a strong arm, but it short-hopped him, and he made a good play and it was a close play at the plate. Obviously the second play, when the ball was hit, I didn't think it was hit as hard as it was. Sometimes you have to give credit to the other guys, but when there is nobody out, you have to make sure they can score, and it just didn't go that way.
Fenway is widely regarded as one of the toughest places to coach third base because of the quirky dimensions in the outfield.
"I think that is one of the toughest jobs in the big leagues, especially here," Francona said. "I think that every decision is not going to work out correctly or to our advantage. They converted both. If they don't, nobody is asking. Because we're swinging the bats, and we get guys thrown out at the plate, you have to answer questions. That's just the way the game is. I tried to remind him after about the fourth inning, 'You're a good coach, you need to have a little amnesia.' Not that we don't try to learn and move on, but I think that's the best way to go about it. It's a tough job."
Bogar admitted that his aggression has gotten the best of him a couple of times this season. Youkilis was thrown out at the plate on April 16 in another controversial call by Bogar. The Red Sox lost that game to the Rays, 3-1, in 12 innings.
"Honestly any time you get somebody thrown out in a situation you shouldn't, it's not easy to stomach," Bogar said. "You feel like he let the team down. The guys battled all day today. They gave us a lot of opportunities to come back, and we just didn't have enough to do it. Mistakes like that just are magnified, and hopefully they will be few and far between."
Epstein, Francona praise Galarraga's grace
BOSTON -- Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein and manager Terry Francona had admiration for the way all parties involved handled the controversy in Detroit on Wednesday night, when a missed call by first-base umpire Jim Joyce prevented Tigers right-hander Armando Galarraga from pitching a perfect game against the Indians.
"I just thought the way Galarraga handled it was incredibly admirable," Epstein said. "I agree with what he said. Everyone's human. People make mistakes. It's unfortunate. Joyce is a great umpire and a really good guy. He feels worse than anybody. So I think there's something to be taken from it. When adversity happens, if we can all handle it the way Galarraga did, we'll be in good shape as an industry. That was pretty graceful."
Instant replay is a subject Epstein has become familiar with through discussions at the General Managers Meetings in recent years.
"It's something we talk about every year," Epstein said. "You can certainly make a strong case for it. I'll just say I'm sure it will be brought up again, and there will be even stronger voices in favor of it going forward."
One thing Epstein did make clear is that he doesn't think Joyce's missed call should be reversed.
"I don't see how baseball can let that happen," Epstein said. "Because then every time a team loses a game on a blown call, there's going to be no good reason why that can't be overturned as well. It's a slippery slope and would just fundamentally change the nature of the game, and I just don't think you can do that, unfortunately."
As for Francona, he is a big believer in the human element of the game.
"I actually watched that a bunch last night, and the more I watched it, the more I became proud of the way it was handled," Francona said. "He made a mistake. There's a few things to remember. With the instant replay now that they have and how slow they can make it, every call is subject to ... it's just, it's so, things are scrutinized so much because we have the ability with technology.
"He missed a call. And the importance of it, he said it was the biggest call he's ever had. Galarraga had an amazing amount of grace and maturity beyond his years, and Jimmy was honest. I was actually really proud of the way everybody handled it."
Francona isn't one of those who will now make a knee-jerk demand for widespread instant replay.
"You can't take it to everything," Francona said. "We'd be out there all night. There has to be a line where you stop. I think they've done a good job with instant replay."
And no, he doesn't think Galarraga can retroactively be credited with a perfect game.
"No," Francona said. "The game is the game. Play the game. Nobody is perfect. The game on the field goes so fast. I don't think people realize, because as you get further away, you have the ability to slow it down with replay. I think I've talked to official scorers about this before. When you slow things down, everything looks like the play should be made. When you're at field level, the play is going fast. It was a bang-bang play, and it was wrong. But it happens. That's the way the game is."
Ortiz, Drew take day off before road trip
BOSTON -- With Thursday's day game after a night game, and a flight looming afterward, Red Sox manager Terry Francona made some adjustments to his lineup, giving sizzling slugger David Ortiz a breather. Right fielder J.D. Drew was also out of the lineup. Boston was facing a tough lefty starter in Brett Anderson, who had to leave the game with left elbow soreness after two innings.
Ortiz belted his 11th homer since May 1 on Wednesday.
"I talked to David about this a couple of days ago. He knew it was coming. It's certainly not because of the way he's swinging the bat," Francona said. "I really wanted [Mike] Lowell to play today. We've gone through a stretch where we're playing a lot of people, and I want to do that. I think we're a better team when we do that. I just think it's good. We've got a quick turnaround. We get Lowell's bat in there."
While Lowell filled in for Ortiz at DH, Bill Hall made the start in right. Jeremy Hermida, a left-handed hitter, stayed in the lineup and played left field.
"Sitting J.D. today is good for him," Francona said. "When he has that day, he's a better player. It's a little tough duty for Hermida. But we can put him a little lower in the lineup and, hopefully, it'll work."
It seemed to work, as Hermida doubled in his first at-bat and homered in the sixth.
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.