BOSTON -- Less than 24 hours after earning the win in his first Major League start, lefty Felix Doubront was optioned back to Triple-A Pawtucket. That had been planned all along, as Doubront was filling in for Daisuke Matsuzaka, who will return from a precautionary disabled list stint and pitch on Thursday against the Rockies.
To replace Doubront, the Red Sox purchased the contract of right-hander Robert Manuel from Pawtucket. Manuel, 26, was 4-1 with a 0.98 ERA in 26 appearances at Triple-A. The Red Sox claimed him off waivers from the Mariners on Nov. 20, 2009.
"His numbers are out of sight," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. "I think he's got a sub-1 ERA or something. He's locating his fastball to both sides of the plate, keeping it down, and he's been tremendous. Not overpowering. He's a kid where you have that last meeting in Spring Training, you say, 'Hey kid, go down and do good and if there's a need, we'll call you up.' Well, there's a need and he gets called up. It's happened a lot but everybody that's come has helped us. Now it will be his turn."
Doubront certainly did his part, giving up three earned runs over five-plus innings to beat the Dodgers on Friday night.
"There's a lot of people spending a lot of time and effort to make sure that when guys like Felix get here, that they know how to act, they know how to pitch, they know how to play," said Francona. "Our organization has done a really good job of that. We're really fortunate. Again, on a night that a Felix Doubront pitches, it would be nice if the player development people could do the press conference [after the game] because they're the ones that deserve [the credit]."