Baseball

Lester, Red Sox issue sigh of relief

Jon Lester was able to joke, so his right leg must have felt relatively good.

“Still attached, so we’re going in the right direction,” the Boston pitcher said.

Lester, the left-hander from Puyallup, was knocked out of Friday night’s 9-5 loss to the New York Yankees by a third-inning liner off the bat of Melky Cabrera. The ball hit near Lester’s right knee, and he sustained only a bruised quadriceps. X-rays revealed no fractures.

“It seems like it’s getting better. This morning it wasn’t as tight as I thought it was going to be,” he said Saturday. “Moving around pretty good – just seems stairs are bothering me a little bit right now.”

Before taking Friday’s loss, Lester had been 6-0 with a 2.44 ERA in his last 11 starts.

Justice deals strike at Yankee Stadium

Sonia Sotomayor was right down the middle with her ceremonial pitch at Yankee Stadium.

The newest Supreme Court Justice, a Yankees fan from the Bronx, threw out the pitch before New York beat Boston, 3-0, on Saturday.

“She walked off, and I said, ‘We’ll be calling you next week with a contract,’ ” Yankees manager Joe Girardi recalled. “And she said she’d stick to her day job.”

Dodgers mull playoff rotation

Los Angeles Dodgers manager Joe Torre is facing a math problem: 6 into 4 won’t go.

Torre plans to go with a four-man rotation if the Dodgers reach the playoffs, but they’re currently using six: Randy Wolf, Clayton Kershaw, Hiroki Kuroda, Jon Garland, Vicente Padilla and Chad Billingsley.

The manager called all six into his office before Saturday night’s game in Pittsburgh and told them no decisions have been made.

“We told them that if we go into the playoffs, we obviously can’t have six starters and we haven’t decided who they are,” Torre said.

Short hops

Jorge Posada missed the Yankees’ win because of muscle spasms near his neck, an injury Girardi said stemmed from knocks the catcher sustained during a brawl with Toronto on Sept. 15. … Roger Clemens looked like any proud father. The seven-time Cy Young Award winner was back on a big league field Saturday. Before the Astros hosted the Cincinnati Reds, Clemens’ son, Koby Clemens, received an MVP award for one of one of Houston’s minor league teams.

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