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Farrell hopeful Drew can return this weekend

BOSTON -- After playing four games for the Red Sox, shortstop Stephen Drew has now missed four consecutive games with soreness in his right oblique. After Drew was examined by the team's medical staff on Thursday, manager John Farrell was hopeful the shortstop could play by this weekend.

This was an upgrade from before the Red Sox's 5-2 win over the Indians, when Farrell mentioned the possibility Drew could need an MRI.

"At this point, there was an ultrasound done," Farrell. "An MRI is a possibility if the increased baseball activities tomorrow warrant it. The plan is for him not to have it right now. He'll ramp up the activities. If there's any kind of reproducing of the symptoms, then it would be administered at this point. Hopefully he gets through tomorrow and then we're looking for game activity on the weekend."

Drew experienced some unexpected discomfort during his second round of batting on Wednesday in Baltimore.

Jonathan Herrera again started at shortstop in Drew's absence and went 2-for-4 with a key two-out triple.

Ian Browne is a reporter for Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne.
Read More: Boston Red Sox, Stephen Drew