Red Sox outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury could play Wednesday vs. Rangers

USA TODAY Sports

He's missed four games with an injury, but might be back as soon as Boston's next game.

Jacoby Ellsbury has missed the last four games after tweaking his groin on a record-setting steal back on May 30. Ellsbury swiped his fifth bag of the night to break his own (and Jerry Remy's) Red Sox single-game record against the Phillies, but it came at a cost -- thankfully, it sounds like that might be over now.

Ellsbury could start "as early as Wednesday" in the second game of Boston's series against the Texas Rangers, reports the Boston Globe. He took part in pre-game drills, so what manager John Farrell and Ellsbury are waiting for is to see how his injury responds to that activity. If he feels good, he could very well be in the lineup against Rangers' starter Alexi Ogando, who, coincidentally, is returning from the 15-day disabled list.

Jackie Bradley Jr. has filled in as the center fielder in Ellsbury's absence, since right fielder and backup center fielder Shane Victorino is on the disabled list. While Victorino is eligible to return today, the Red Sox don't want to push him back before he's ready and increase the chance of further injury. That's good practice in general, but with Bradley hitting well since he was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket -- he's at .294 with three extra-base hits, including his first big-league homer, in the six games of his second stint in the bigs -- there's even less reason to rush Victorino back.

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