BOSTON -- Banged up as they are, the Red Sox were looking forward to getting Jed Lowrie back in the lineup for Game 2 of Monday's day-night doubleheader.
It didn't take long to see why. In his first at-bat since Sept. 13, Lowrie pummeled a three-run homer against Orioles lefty Brian Matusz in the bottom of the first inning. Just like that, a 3-1 Boston deficit turned into a 4-3 lead.
For Lowrie, it was a sign that his ailing left shoulder, which has bothered him on and off to varying degrees since late May, might finally be feeling a little better.
The switch-hitting infielder had a cortisone shot last week.
Lowrie's towering blast snapped an 84 at-bat homerless drought, dating back to Aug. 12.
With Kevin Youkilis out for an indefinite amount of time as he deals with a sports hernia injury, Lowrie's presence could be vital.
"You know what? I hope so," said manager Terry Francona. "And I hope we've waited long enough where when we get Jed back, [he'll be effective]. And especially against left-handers, he can be such a force, so hopefully that will be the case."