Breslow nears spring debut with future in doubt

Breslow nears spring debut with future in doubt

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Lefty reliever Craig Breslow, an invaluable component to Boston's bullpen last season, will pitch in his first exhibition game on Monday. By then, the Red Sox should have a better indication of whether it is realistic for him to make the Opening Day roster with just one week of game activity in Florida.

Though the club has not linked a specific injury to Breslow, they said a conservative approach was observed to help avoid the fatigue that led to his starting 2013 on the disabled list.

"It's going to be dependent on what his needs are currently," manager John Farrell said. "To say we're following the same schedule or calendar we did a year ago, we're basing this all on what he's capable of. There's been no final determination yet. We expect him to be in a game on Monday. He's got a bullpen today and hitters Friday. We'll gradually get to the right decision."

The Red Sox have two other lefties in their bullpen in Andrew Miller and Chris Capuano. Farrell would not confirm whether, should Breslow start on the disabled list, he would replace him with another lefty.

"If there's a scenario in which he's going to be delayed, we'll look to take the best available pitcher," Farrell said. "And at that point, we'd like to think, or I personally think, that a multi-inning reliever is needed."

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.