David Ortiz is expected to begin a minor-league rehab assignment on Monday, manager John Farrell told reporters on Wednesday afternoon. The Red Sox expect their DH to return to the lineup during the third week of April.
Ortiz, 37, did not play in spring training due to soreness in both heels. He also missed the end of last season due to an Achilles issue. Ortiz hit .318/.415/.611 (171 OPS+) with 23 homers in 90 games while healthy last season, which led to the team giving him a two-year contract worth $26 millon this winter.
Boston will use Jonny Gomes at DH against lefties while Daniel Nava gets the call against rightes while Ortiz is on the DL. Top prospect Jackie Bradley Jr. has taken over the left-field job on an everyday basis following his strong showing in camp.