Lackey to pitch during instructional league game

Lackey to pitch during instructional league game

ST. PETERSBURG -- Red Sox right-hander John Lackey will get his first and last taste of game competition for 2012 when he pitches against instructional league hitters in Fort Myers, Fla., on Sunday.

For Lackey, the outing -- which will be during an intrasquad game -- will be a good way to take some more momentum into the offseason.

"That will be his last duty of the season," said manager Bobby Valentine.

Lackey threw against teammates at Tropicana Field on Tuesday, throwing two simulated innings, each of which were 15 pitches.

"He said afterwards he felt really good," Valentine said. "He threw everything but his cutter. He happened to acknowledge that the medical staff was outstanding right from Spring Training throughout the entire season. He feels really good about where he is."

Lackey underwent Tommy John surgery last October. Everything has gone as scheduled during Lackey's rehab, meaning he should have a typical winter and be ready for the start of 2013.

With his arm repaired, Lackey hopes to regain the form he had when he was the long-time ace of the Angels.