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4/18/2014 8:12 P.M. ET

Holt called up, Roberts designated for assignment

BOSTON -- Brock Holt was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket by the Red Sox on Friday. He was in the starting lineup, playing third base and batting ninth.

To make room on the roster, infielder Ryan Roberts was designated for assignment.

Holt had been called up April 6, but did not get into a game. He was returned to Pawtucket to make room for Roberts, who joined the Red Sox on April 7 as a free agent.

In 12 games with Pawtucket this season, Holt was hitting .380 (19-for-50), with a .446 on base percentage, .600 slugging percentage, 11 runs scored and three RBIs. He had stolen four bases without being caught.

"We felt like we needed to create a little bit of a jump-start to the offense," manager John Farrell said. "With the designation of Ryan, we got another left-handed hitter here in Brock Holt. We've come through a stretch of I think seven left-handed starters against us over the past 10. And we're kind of reversing that right now, going against primarily right-handers. So [I] felt like we needed to try different combinations and to spark that bottom third of the order."

Farrell was pleased with reports he had received on Holt.

"He's clearly earned the promotion here," Farrell said. "When he was sent out even after just one day of being here with the big league club, I think he was initially disappointed. But he's channeled that in the right way and gone out and played very well on the left side of the infield."

In 26 games with the Sox last season, Holt hit .203 (12-for-59}, playing 20 games at third base and five at second.

Roberts had struggled with the Sox. In five games, he was hitless in 11 at-bats, with four strikeouts and two walks.

"He had about a nine-day layoff from the end of Spring Training till he joined us here," Farrell said. "As we talked to him today, he's got to go through the waiver process, but we certainly want him to remain in the organization. [We] feel like he needs at-bats to get things going a little bit."

Victorino to begin Triple-A rehab stint Saturday

BOSTON -- Red Sox right fielder Shane Victorino, on the 15-day disabled list since March 31 (retroactive to March 30), went through a full pregame workout before Friday's game against the Orioles at Fenway Park, and is expected to begin a rehab assignment with Triple-A Pawtucket on Saturday.

Manager John Farrell said he wants Victorino to play in back-to-back rehab games before he is activated.

Third baseman Will Middlebrooks, on the 15-day DL since April 5 with a right calf strain, was sent home a day early from Chicago, where the Red Sox completed a three-game set with the White Sox on Thursday, because of the flu.

Middlebrooks was back in the Red Sox clubhouse Friday afternoon. Victorino also had the flu while on the DL, but was away from the team for several days because of the illness.

"[Middlebrooks is] improved," Farrell said. "He wasn't as sick as Vic when we kept him away for about six or seven days. But I don't think this is going to delay Will in his eventual rehab assignment, which we're still hopefully targeting sometime in the middle part of next week."

Worth noting

Grady Sizemore played left field for the first time in his career April 10 in Yankee Stadium. He was in the lineup Friday night playing in front of Fenway Park's left-field wall for the first time.

"We can't go out and have so much repetition, so we got him comfortable this afternoon," Farrell said. "He's going to get some, but he's in left field."

• Farrell said Koji Uehara was available if needed to close Friday night. Uehara earned the save Thursday night against the White Sox. It was the first time he appeared in a game since April 9 after being sidelined with a sore shoulder.

David Ortiz was not in the starting lineup Friday against Baltimore right-hander Chris Tillman. Farrell said it was a scheduled day off.

Maureen Mullen is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.