Kevin Youkilis Returns To Boston Red Sox Lineup
Yesterday we reported that Boston Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis was unhappy with management’s decision to sit him out for three games, now less than 24 hours after complaining about his role on the team Youkilis has been placed back into the teams starting lineup.
Youkilis started Sunday’s game against the Atlanta Braves in the sixth batting order and his return was met with a standing ovation from fans at Fenway Park as he came to the plate in the second inning.
Kevin Youkilis was replaced this week by rookie Will Middlebrooks who went 10-for-14 (.714 batting average). Middlebrooks pulled in three home runs and nine RBIs in just five games. While Youkilis earned back his starting lineup position Middlebrooks remained active as the teams designated hitter, batting third in the lineup.
By throwing Middlebrooks into the DH position David Ortiz received his first home game off all season.
On Saturday Youkilis complained that he wasn’t able to discuss his playing time with Valentine.
Youkilis said of his suspended play:
“You want to play. I definitely want to play the game and enjoy it and have fun. I don’t know my situation. To be honest, I was never told what’s going on here — let’s get that straight.”
When asked if Kevin’s return to the lineup said anything about a potential trade Bobby Valentine responded:
“I don’t think so. It’s not directly related to anything, other than trying to win a ballgame and keep him as sharp as possible.”
Valentine says the lineup change was meant to give Middlebrooks a chance to rest his legs while allowing Kevin Youkilis a little bit of playing time.