SEATTLE -- With ace Josh Beckett set to reclaim his spot in the rotation on Friday night, Red Sox manager Terry Francona had to bump Tim Wakefield to the bullpen for the second time this season.
The veteran knuckleballer threw his normal post-start side session on Thursday, but will be available as a reliever before the weekend is out.
"I guess we do what we think is best for the team, and explain it, and when guys don't like it, don't understand it, we try to explain it to them," said Francona. "It's no different with Wake than with anyone else, with the exception that we've known Wake a long time, we know what he's accomplished. But regardless of who they are, we try to have the same attitude. We try to put the team first and explain to guys why we do things. It's really no different."
Of course, Wakefield could always reappear in the rotation, whether it is to give another starter an extra day of rest or to step in if there is another injury.
"We're coming up on August, so we should be in pretty good shape as far as if we need him again, which I don't doubt we will," Francona said. "Some of how we use Wake will be determined by how everyone else does. He's probably not a situational guy, but some of it will be determined by how the rest of the staff is doing."