FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Six quick hits with J.D. Drew, returning for his fourth season as the Red Sox right-fielder:
1.Aches and pains: Bone spurs in his left shoulder led him to have a cortisone injection, but when the condition worsened in the off-season, he alerted the Red Sox medical staff and the spurs showed up on an MRI.
“There may have been some times I was affected playing with it, but not really that much,’’ he said. “The bone spurs were really just a nagging thing.’’
He had surgery to remove the bone spurs and said that Dr. Thomas Gill told him it was good that he took care of it, because he probably wouldn’t have made it through the season.
"We opted just to cut into the shoulder instead of the (arthro) scope. A 'scope would have put me back a couple more weeks. Doc said he would have gone in and explored the (rotator) cuff and everything else. Instead, we just did the bony work and got out.''
He said he started hitting in the offseason when he usually would at the end of January and would have no restrictions to start the spring.
2.Boffo finish: From July 25 on, Drew hit .355 with 12 home runs and 30 RBIs.
“The second half of the year, I thought I was swinging the bat as good as any point in my career,’’ Drew said. “I had a good little thing, going hopefully can pick up where I left off and just kind of keep that rolling.”
3. Ells’ bells: During a family trip to New Mexico, Drew said, “I swear I saw everyone who was kin to Ellsbury. There were people everywhere who were kin to Ellsbury. The whole Navajo Nation was Ellsbury. I went to Wal-Mart, and everyone had name tags but they didn’t have names. They said, ‘I am Ellsbury’s cousin.’ ‘I am Ellsbury’s second cousin.’ So I was giving him a hard time about that.’’
4.Run, run Rudolph: On the same trip, Drew said he’d told his kids they were going to the North Pole, because of the snow. “As big a deer hunter as I am, a couple big deer walked out and my son thought it was Rudolph. There was no chance. I told him, ‘Get my bow and arrow.’ He said, ‘No, it’s Rudolph.’ OK. Can’t shoot Rudolph. That was off-limits to me.’’
5.D-fense: While paying respects to the departed Jason Bay, Drew said this about Mike Cameron: “The addition of Mike is really special to the outfield. We’ll get that much faster. Someone of his caliber, it should be fun to watch.’’
6.Scoring column: Drew dismissed concerns that the Sox won’t have enough offense. “As long as guys throw it up there, we can make the plays,’’ he said. “As long as we score more runs than the other team, if we keep them down, it’s not going to be hard to do.’’