Ortiz to tackle agility drills

BOSTON -- Before a decision is made on when Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz will return to the lineup, he needs to complete a set of power agility drills without pain.

Ortiz, on the DL since July 17 with a right Achilles strain, will participate in those drills Sunday at Fenway Park.

“I’m feeling better, slowly,” he said. “I’m going day-by-day, but I’m starting to feel better. It’s starting to go away, which is a good sign.”

He was eligible to be activated on Aug. 1, but he does not want to push it and wants to make sure he’s 100 percent before returning.

“The only thing that fixes this injury is time off,” he said. “It’s difficult for me right now to watch the game and not be able to be out there and help the ballclub. At the same time, I’m planning on keeping on playing baseball and I don’t want to do anything stupid that would put my career in jeopardy. I’ve got to do what they tell me to do.”

Without Ortiz in the lineup, the Red Sox are 7-11 and have no home runs from the DH position. Overall, Ortiz is hitting .316 with 23 homers and 58 RBIs in 89 games this season.