Lowrie got the start at shortstop against the Angels on Saturday. Francona isn't sure who will start on Sunday against Halos righty Jon Garland.
"I want to play this kid a little bit," Francona said. "I want to keep [Alex Cora] sharp, and we always have tried to do that. But I want to play this kid a little bit."
The one question about Lowrie is his range at shortstop. It has been suggested by some that Lowrie projects better as a second or third baseman. Francona is keeping an open mind.
"He'll be measured by some, hopefully not me, by a ball that he maybe can't get to, that's up the middle or in the hole," Francona said. "If you make the routine play consistently, you just make the plays you're supposed to make, that's good. That's a good shortstop. Again, you take your whole game and add it together, and does it help you win games? That's really what it is. Some guys need to do more in areas. This guy is probably going to be a little bit of an offensive player here. It will be fun to watch him. I haven't seen him play a ton. I'm kind of looking forward to it."
Earlier this season, when Mike Lowell was on the disabled list, Lowrie came up from Triple-A Pawtucket and seemed to help the Red Sox win every time he played. Now he's back, possibly for the rest of the season.
"If he's a good hitter, he probably projects anywhere. My point earlier was, baseball people, myself included, can get caught up in what a guy can't do as opposed to what they can do. This kid has done a lot."
-- Manager Terry Francona, on Jed Lowrie
"It's always exciting to be in the big leagues," Lowrie said. "I know my role on this team is when someone gets hurt, I'm going to be the guy to come up and help out. You never want to see someone get hurt, but at the same time, it's a good opportunity for me."
Though Lowrie was a second baseman at Stanford University, he has played a lot of shortstop in the Minor Leagues. He is comfortable in his ability there, even if the scouts might not be.
"For me, it's not about showing anybody outside this clubhouse," Lowrie said. "For me, it's about going out there and proving to the guys in this clubhouse and the organization and to myself that I can play shortstop. If I do that, I feel like everything else will take care of itself."
His manager seems to have similar confidence. Some of that stems from what Francona has heard from Triple-A Pawtucket manager Ron Johnson.
"He swears that this kid will hit our bullpen from the right side," Francona said. "He swears on it. That's good enough for me. That was kind of reassuring."
Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein said that Lowrie has more power from the right side, and he's more of an on-base player when hitting lefty.
It remains to be seen which position Lowrie will end up at during his career.
"If he's a good hitter, he probably projects anywhere," Francona said. "My point earlier was, baseball people, myself included, can get caught up in what a guy can't do as opposed to what they can do. This kid has done a lot."