Koji playing catch, but no timetable for return

Koji playing catch, but no timetable for return

BOSTON -- Right-handed reliever Koji Uehara is inching closer to the bullpen after suffering a right pectoral strain. The 40-year-old participated in 60-foot throws in Los Angeles during the team's series against the Dodgers and is continuing that practice in Boston.

Uehara's progress is more like a game of catch, as there is no intensity to his throws just yet. The ball in his hand serves as a way of initiating the throwing motion and his velocity will increase over time. Red Sox manager John Farrell is hopeful Uehara will be back in the bullpen at some point this season.

"He'll likely go through more of an ultrasound, just to double check and get a view of what's going on there," Farrell said. "But his throwing progression will be gradual. Typically, we go 30-foot increments, 60 feet today. That may be a couple times before we stretch him out, but this is the very early stages of his throwing."

Veteran outfielder Chris Young ran the bases in Boston on Tuesday and will begin a rehab assignment this week with Triple-A Pawtucket. This could mean some adjusting for rookie Andrew Benintendi, who's currently platooning with Bryce Brentz in left field.

"Aggressive, came out of it good," Farrell said of Young on the basepaths. "The ideal first two days [of rehab] for [Young] would be five innings in the outfield followed by a DH game. So whether or not that's initiated tomorrow or Thursday, that remains to be seen."

Worth noting

• Farrell said he is still considering moving right fielder Mookie Betts out of the leadoff spot and into the middle of the order. However, with shortstop Xander Bogaerts getting a day off Tuesday, the manager said the first game of the homestand was not the day for a move.

"It would be a matter of rearranging three hitters so it's not wholesale changes, but it's something that is looked at pretty much in depth," Farrell said.

Deesha Thosar is a reporter for MLB.com based in Boston. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.