Red Sox Notebook: Colon Has Work To Do

Bartolo Colon will never be confused for a professional bodybuilder. But even the Red Sox admitted Tuesday, shortly after Colon reported to Ft. Myers, that the veteran right-hander has some pounds to shed before he can return to the majors.

"We've got some work to do to get him right," Sox pitching coach John Farrell told reporters Tuesday. "I don't know the exact number of pounds that might have to be lost here. I think there's some self-acknowledgment on his part that he is a little bit overweight right now and we'll have to work to arrive at a playing weight that he's been accustomed to."

Colon, who was listed at 5-foot-11 and 245 pounds in last year's Angels media guide, donned a Sox T-shirt and hat and played long toss with Farrell. It was an appropriate beginning to what will likely be a slow path back to the bigs for Colon, who has struggled with arm and back woes since winning the AL Cy Young Award for the Angels in 2005. Colon went 7-13 with a 5.90 ERA in just 155 2/3 innings over the last two years and walked four batters in 8 1/3 innings of winter ball. He last pitched in the Caribbean Series Feb. 6 and is expected to open the season at Triple-A Pawtucket.

"Right now, there's really no timetable on when he's going to get in a game," Farrell said. "Without having really picked up a ball in the last three weeks, it's going to take him a little time to get back in shape. But he's a guy that provides us some depth as a starter."

Additional details of Colon's contract were revealed by the Boston Herald, which reported he could make as much as $7 million—$1.25 million in base salary and $5.75 million in bonuses based on games started—if he makes 30 starts. He will make $18,000 per month as a minor leaguer.


Lowrie a head-banger: Infielder Jed Lowrie, the top-ranked infielder in the Sox chain, endured an injury scare Monday, when he collided with 2007 draftee David Mailman during a rundown drill. Mailman reportedly stopped and Lowrie, who had been looking down, ran into him head first.

"I don't know what happened," Lowrie told reporters. "He just stopped in the middle of the basepath. I kind of tried to jump out of the way. It was kind of a grazing blow—hit me on the glove and the bill of the hat and the side of the head. I think it looked worse than it really was. It was just one of those things—both guys were going hard, he stopped. Just took a grazing blow."


End of the road at the end of Edison Avenue: The Sox will hold their final workout at the minor league complex Wednesday before they head to the White House for a ceremony with President Bush. The exhibition season begins Thursday, when the Sox face Boston College and Northeastern in a day-night doubleheader at City of Palms Park.


Diehard managing editor Jerry Beach can be reached at diehardmag@yahoo.com. To receive a free issue of Diehard, call 888-501-5752. To subscribe to Diehard or diehardmagazine.com, please CLICK HERE.

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