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06/20/08 8:42 PM ET

Ortiz could start swinging in a week

Sox slugger recovering from partially torn sheath in left wrist

BOSTON -- David Ortiz is now at the point of his recovery from a partially torn sheath in his left wrist that he can at least think about picking up a bat.

The designated hitter, who had the cast removed in place of a removable forearm splint on Monday, could start swinging by the end of next week.

"David is doing real well," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. "He's doing his strength and conditioning, doing mobility with his wrist. I think there's a hope that he may be a week to 10 days from picking up a bat."

There's still no timetable for Ortiz returning to game action.

"He still knows it's there, but it seems to be getting better every day, and he's doing more and more and he's getting pushed pretty hard," Francona said. "He's going to go out and do some running today. I think he looks good. But at the same time, we don't want to do something too quick. That wouldn't help. Everybody you talk to that's had this, and talking to medical people, it needs to heal. So we're going to let it heal. So when he does come back, he'll come back and be David and not limping through his at-bats."

In terms of day-to-day lineup maneuvers, the Red Sox got first baseman Kevin Youkilis back in the lineup after the right-handed hitter missed three games with back stiffness. And Coco Crisp, who had to leave Wednesday's game with soreness on the top of his left hand, was also back in there Friday night, batting seventh and playing center field.

Manny Ramirez, who has been playing through pain in his right hamstring, served as the designated hitter.

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.