Green, Lowrie question marks for ALDS

Green, Lowrie question marks for ALDS

BOSTON -- There continues to be a dilemma over who will be the Red Sox's backup middle infielder during the Division Series.

Nick Green is hampered by a slipped disk that didn't show significant improvement when he took ground balls before Thursday's game. And switch-hitter Jed Lowrie, who had left wrist surgery in April, is still not comfortable when he gets multiple at-bats from the left side.

Green, who last played on Sept. 16, was hoping to play in games by this weekend, but that no longer sounds realistic.

"Anytime you have high expectations and things don't turn out the way you want them to, it's always disappointing," Green said. "Nothing was bad -- it just wasn't what I wanted. I wanted to go out there and take ground balls like I'd normally take ground balls, and I didn't do it as well as I should, the way I wanted it to be. It wasn't bad, it just wasn't what I wanted."

Green hasn't given up hope entirely of earning a spot on the Division Series roster, but time is clearly running out.

Lowrie started against Roy Halladay on Wednesday night, marking the first time he played against a right-hander since coming back to the roster on Sept. 8.

"My first at-bat, I was a little tentative -- that was the first left-handed at-bat I've had in a long time," Lowrie said. "Second at-bat, I took a real good swing, and at that point, the adrenaline kind of wore off. And then those game swings, and then it kind of started to go back to what it was. The inflammation came back, and I started to feel it in my hand a little bit, and it felt like it was the same -- the same stuff."

The one wrinkle with Lowrie is that he has no problem facing left-handed pitching and he can also play defense without limitations. Is there a chance he could be on the roster, with the understanding that his at-bats from the left side will be minimal?

"That's a real possibility that they feel comfortable with me hitting right handed, and maybe not left handed right now," Lowrie said. "It's not something that we've talked about, but the way things have gone, it's a possibility."

Of course, the other possibility is that the Red Sox could go with their healthiest option for the spot in Chris Woodward. The right-handed-hitting veteran has had limited playing time during his three stints on the Boston roster this season, taking just 12 at-bats.

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.