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Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Ortiz confirms he's not ready to play

By Tony Lee

BOSTON -- Designated hitter David Ortiz confirmed that he will not come off the disabled list when he's eligible on Wednesday.

“Not tomorrow,” said Ortiz, who has been out since July 17 with a right Achilles strain. “Still limping a little bit when I walk. Got to be pain free first before I can start running.”

Ortiz, who wasn't able to do some scheduled agility drills over the weekend in New York due to the pain, took some swings during batting practic Tuesday. The Sox are 6-7 without their designated hitter, scoring three runs or fewer eight times in those 13 games.

* On the same day the Red Sox traded away right-handed reliever Matt Albers, they revealed news that another could be lost for a long time to come.

Manager Bobby Valentine told reporters that Scott Atchison has a tear in his ulnar collateral ligament. Atchison is going to get a second opinion, and if the tear is conformed he would require Tommy John surgery.

Atchison initially was placed on the disabled list with right forearm tightness. He made one rehab appearance for Triple-A Pawtucket in which he gave up three runs in an inning of work. The pain had moved up his arm in the wake of that outing, prompting the exam that showed the tear.

If Atchison needs Tommy John surgery, he will be out until well into the 2013 season. The 36-year-old is not arbitration-eligible until 2014.

Atchison is 2-1 with a 1.76 ERA in 37 games, one of the leaders in a bullpen that has surprised many with its relative dominance. He was even mentioned as a darkhorse All-Star candidate, a remarkable development given his career path through multiple organizations, several minor-league stops and two years in Japan.

* Pedro Ciriaco is making his third straight start at shortstop Tuesday in place of the injured Mike Aviles, who had an injection to alleviate the pain from his turf toe.

Aviles had an MRI to make sure it was nothing more serious. Now it is a matter of allowing the injection to do its thing.

“It’s the tolerance,” Valentine said. “It’s not as though if he ran out there he would damage it, but it might hurt if he ran out there.”

* The Red Sox called up reliever Clayton Mortensen from Pawtucket, presumably holding a spot for lefty Craig Breslow, who was acquired from the Diamondbacks for Albers and outfielder Scott Podsednik.

This is Mortensen’s fourth stint with Boston. He has a 1.33 ERA and has held opponents to a .174 average so far with the Sox.
Mortensen is 5-3 with two saves and a 1.77 ERA for the PawSox.

In addition, Boston activated right-hander Chris Carpenter from the 60-day disabled list and optioned him to Pawtucket. Carpenter, who was compensation for Theo Epstein leaving to become the general manager of the Chicago Cubs, was recovering from right elbow surgery. He has made 12 appearances (four starts) in a rehab process that has seen him pitch at four levels of the minor league system.