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Beckett to pitch Grapefruit opener

2/27/2012

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Red Sox pitching plans for the first week of games have been posted in the clubhouse, and Josh Beckett draws the assignment for Sunday’s official Grapefruit League opener against the Minnesota Twins. That will be the inaugural game played in JetBlue Park.

A notable absentee from the initial list is new closer Andrew Bailey, who is scheduled to throw Monday after missing a couple of days with a strained lat muscle. It could be that the Sox are waiting to see how Bailey is before adding him to the schedule. Bobby Valentine will surely be asked after the workout.

Alfredo Aceves and Daniel Bard, who have been penciled in to the rotation, are both scheduled to throw in the “B” game scheduled for Thursday at 1 at Hammond Stadium. Jon Lester draws the start Saturday afternoon against Northeastern, with Felix Doubront scheduled to start the nightcap against Boston College.

After Beckett goes Sunday, Clay Buchholz is scheduled to face the Twins Monday, Bard and Aceves go Tuesday against the Orioles, Lester is to face the Twins in a “B” game Wednesday, with Carlos Silva going in the regularly scheduled game in Dunedin against Toronto.

Here’s the complete list:

* B game at Twins, Thursday: Bard, Clayton Mortensen, Jesse Carlson, Tony Pena Jr., Alex Wilson, Will Inman, Justin Thomas

* Northeastern, Saturday afternoon: Lester, Justin Germano, Michael Bowden, Matt Albers

* Boston College, Saturday night: Doubront, Junichi Tazawa, Doug Mathis, Chorye Spoone

* Minnesota, Sunday: Beckett, Andrew Miller, Mark Melancon, Thomas, Pena, Scott Atchison

* At Minnesota, Monday: Buchholz, Vicente Padilla, Inman, Carlson, Brandon Duckworth

* Vs. Baltimore, Tuesday: Bard, Aceves, Wilson, Mortensen

* Vs. Minnesota, B game, Wednesday: Lester, Spoone, Drake Britton, Albers, Thomas, Atchison, Mathis

* Vs. Toronto, at Dunedin, Wednesday: Silva, Tazawa, Melancon, Pena, Germano