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Notes: Delcarmen back in big leagues

Notes: Delcarmen back in big leagues

BOSTON -- Right-hander Manny Delcarmen was back home in Boston on Sunday, nearly three weeks after his lone 2007 cup of coffee came to an abrupt end.

The 2000 graduate of West Roxbury High School and former second-round Draft pick drove up from Pawtucket on Sunday morning, a day after hearing he'd been recalled from Triple-A. He was in high spirits before the Red Sox took on the Giants.

Since May 5, Delcarmen had not allowed a run, a performance spanning 10 appearances, 15 2/3 innings and 17 strikeouts. He threw a scoreless inning in a Red Sox loss at Yankee Stadium on May 21, his lone appearance in Boston during his previous callup, which lasted a week. The velocity of his fastball, Delcarmen said, is currently hovering between 95 and 97 miles per hour.

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"As long as I'm around there," he said, "I'll be fine."

Manager Terry Francona hinted that he'd be looking to hand the ball to the 6-foot-2 right-hander more during this stint.

"He's been throwing very well," Francona said. "Very well. And we would not hesitate to use him in just about any situation."

Donnelly to the DL: Francona was less upbeat about the cause of Delcarmen's callup.

Against the Giants on Friday, reliever Brendan Donnelly was warming up when he felt tightness in his forearm. He briefly tried pitching through the pain before bullpen coach Gary Tuck shut him down.

"Which was real good," said Francona of Tuck's decision. "Because I don't doubt Donnelly would've pitched in the game. Because he likes to pitch, and he'll pitch through stuff."

An MRI on Saturday showed swelling in the muscle. Team doctors recommended shutting down Donnelly for the week. Since it had been six days since Donnelly's last appearance, the team placed the right-hander on the disabled list retroactive to June 11.

"This cropped up while he was warming up," Francona said. "And there was nothing leading up to it. Which, from what I understand, is good. If it had been bothering him for two weeks, that wouldn't have been as good."

Team plane awaits: After the conclusion of Sunday's game, the Red Sox are scheduled to fly south to Atlanta. They'll face the Braves in a three-game series that starts there Monday.

Then it's west to San Diego, where the Sox will enjoy an off-day before facing their last Interleague opponent, the Padres. Without a break, the Red Sox will then fly north to Seattle. On June 27, after the conclusion of their series against the Mariners, the Sox will fly back east to Boston, completing a perfect circuit of the contiguous United States.

"We just go where they tell us," Francona said. "You know, with Interleague Play, you have some interesting trips. I'm sure every team has trips [with] the same type of thing. It's inevitable; you can't get around it."

Such extended road trips can be especially taxing, both mentally and physically. On June 3, Boston finished a long night game against the Yankees at home, then shipped off to Oakland. They arrived in California at 6:30 a.m. local time and had to be at the park by 2 p.m.

"It showed, the way we played the next couple of days," said reliever Joel Pineiro of the Red Sox, who dropped the first three games against the A's. "We had the jet lag and everything. It's not the same."

But Pineiro added that he has "no complaints" about travel from the East Coast. He spent eight seasons in Seattle, where playing almost any road series is a grind.

"Any trip on this side feels easy now after being in Seattle for all those years," Pineiro said.

According to catcher Jason Varitek, it's not worth bothering about going on the road.

"You can't make excuses," Varitek said. "You've still got to go out and perform either way. You could just well go out and score 20 runs like that. So I don't put too much stock into it."

Crisp sits: Center fielder Coco Crisp got a day off Sunday. Francona said he could still insert him into the outfield for defense -- "It's hard to [sit him], because he's been playing so well in center field" -- but conceded that Crisp could use the off-day.

"I just think you run the risk of running somebody into the ground," he said.

With trips to a pair of spacious outfields at Atlanta's Turner Field and San Diego's PETCO Park, Francona said, the team will need Crisp every day, and Sunday was the logical time to sit him.

On deck: Red Sox starter Curt Schilling returns to Atlanta, where he has tormented the Braves in 18 starts over 15 years as a member of the Phillies, Diamondbacks and Red Sox. The Braves will counter with changeup-throwing lefty Chuck James. First pitch on Monday is slated for 7:05 p.m. ET.

Alex McPhillips is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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