Apr 24, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA: Boston Red Sox center fielder Marlon Byrd (23) celebrates with right fielder Ryan Sweeney (12) after scoring a run in the fifth inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. The Red Sox won 11-2. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE
Ryan Sweeney is back from the 7-day disabled list Monday after passing a concussion test over the weekend. He will start in center field against the Tigers today, with Adrian Gonzalez remaining in right. Che-Hsuan Lin has been optioned to Pawtucket to make room for Sweeney.
The Sox haven't seen Sweeney in the lineup since the series against the Philadelphia Phillies, which given the way he was hitting in May (.236/.276/.291), wasn't actually that much of a loss. Still, compared to the alternatives in Byrd and Podsednik, Sweeney brings the best glove and the greatest ability to do something with the bat, given what we saw from him in April.
It's interesting that Sweeney's return hasn't put an end to Adrian Gonzalez playing right field. Apparently the Sox are more comfortable with having Gonzalez' glove in the outfield than they are with having Byrd or Podsednik in the lineup, even batting ninth. Given that Crawford, Ellsbury, and Ross are still a ways away, it's entirely possible we'll be seeing a lot more of this over the next few weeks.