FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Mike Lowell will be wearing an unfamiliar glove on his hand and standing on the opposite side of the diamond from his accustomed spot when he makes his exhibition debut here Monday against the Baltimore Orioles.
Lowell will be playing first base, a position he hasn't played since 1998, when he appeared for four games there for Triple-A Columbus.
Lowell, who had offseason thumb surgery, has been doing extra work with infield coach Tim Bogar, but is determined to remain under the radar, declining to share his thoughts about playing the new position.
He appears determined not to be any more of a distraction than his presence in camp already creates, inasmuch as the club has a new third baseman in Adrian Beltre and it is unlikely that Lowell would be happy in a reserve role. The Red Sox tried to trade Lowell in the offseason and it is likely they will try again before the regular season begins.
Before teams are likely to bite on Lowell, he will need to show they he has recovered from thumb and hip injuries and can be effective at the plate and in the field.
Beltre will be in the lineup and playing third. Here is the 1-9:
1. Mike Cameron, CF
2. Mike Lowell, 1B
3. Victor Martinez, C
4. David Ortiz, DH
5. J.D. Drew, RF
6. Adrian Beltre, 3B
7. Bill Hall, SS
8. Jeremy Hermida, LF
9. Tug Hulett, 2B
P -- Tim Wakefield, RHP