According to WLBZ2, the NBC affiliate local to the Double-A Portland Sea Dogs, Stephen Drew's locker has been packed up, possibly signalling an early return for Boston's shortstop after a Josh Johnson fastball knocked Jose Iglesias out of Friday night's game.
While John Farrell told reporters after Boston's 6-4 win that Drew would be staying in Portland for another two days, regardless of Iglesias' status, this would hardly be the first time a baseball team has said one thing while doing another. After watching Iglesias jump out of the batters box in serious pain, it's hard to imagine something isn't wrong in his elbow. While he would stay on to make an excellent defensive play, he didn't see the batter's box again, being lifted for Pedro Ciriaco in the fourth.
If, indeed, the Sox are without Iglesias, Ciriaco would effectively be their last line of defense from having to call up drew early. With nobody at all available to back up the position, however--Brock Holt is next in line on the 40-man--the Sox might well have been forced into activating Drew early, pulling him away from his rehab assignment. Drew has been out since early in spring training with a concussion suffered after being hit by a pitch himself, but the concussion has cleared, with the rehab assignments there to enable him to get his timing down after missing most of March.
The last few days have seen a fair bit of discussion over the Drew - Iglesias situation, with fans wondering whether the Red Sox would be able to justify removing Iglesias from the lineup in favor of Drew after the former's hot start. All agreed, however, that it was a good problem to have. Unfortunately, that issue might have just been decided for us.