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Can Ortiz go where no Sox has tread?

MINNEAPOLIS -- A few quick hits before Thursday’s matinee from Target Field:

* No Sox player has ever had three consecutive multi-homer games, so the odds aren’t stacked in David Ortiz’s favor. Only one big-leaguer since 1970 has done it: During a series in Puerto Rico’s bandbox Hiram Bithorn Stadium, the Angels' Jeff Davanon had two in three straight games in 2003.

On the plus side, Ortiz is batting .409 with 2 home runs in 22 at-bats against Twins starter Phil Hughes, the former Yankee.

* More Ortiz, from STATS, Inc.: He has a .578 average, 9 HRs, a 1.222 slugging percentage and a 1.850 OPS in his last 11 games at Target Field.

* More Ortiz, from baseball-reference.com: The last player 38 years or older to have consecutive multi-homer games was Ty Cobb, in 1925. Surprised that Barry Bonds isn’t on that list.

* It’s Mike Carp in left and Jonny Gomes in right as John Farrell rests Grady Sizemore and Shane Victorino, the latter in part because his left knee is sore after a hard slide into third base Tuesday night. Nothing to worry about, Farrell said; the day off is to keep it that way. As for Sizemore, whose playing time the Sox have regulated since training camp, the wraps are off, Farrell said.

"He could have gone today," Farrell said. "To say that he's up to six or seven games a week, I think that's conceivable at this point. Where we've come over the last six weeks is drastically different than coming out of spring training, where we had to balance a number of games per week. In my mind, there's probably no restrictions at this point."

* Thursday’s starter, Clay Buchholz, last started against the Twins in Target Field almost a year ago today. Last May 17, he gave up two runs on four hits while striking out nine in seven innings. He did not factor into the decision.