Red Sox considering plan to keep Middlebrooks that may take Youk's OK

The Red Sox have been so enthralled by the early play of rookie third baseman Will Middlebrooks and are so depleted by injuries that the team's hierarchy is discussing a plan that will enable Middlebrooks to stay when Kevin Youkilis is called up but would require some sacrifice on the part of veteran stars Adrian Gonzalez and Kevin Youkilis.

Red Sox people are mulling the plan whereby they'd keep Middlebrooks and still employ him at third base for the most part, with Youkilis switching between first base and third and Gonzalez, one of the game's best first basemen, playing more often in the outfield.

The Red Sox bosses want to run the potential plan past the veterans involved, but the agreeable Gonzalez OK'd the move to the outfield to enable David Ortiz to play first base in the interleague games against the Phillies, so Youkilis could be the key. It's hard to imagine a veteran leader like Youkilis standing in the way, either.

The possible plan was hatched after their sixth and seventh outfielders, Cody Ross and Ryan Sweeney, became injured. Scott Podsednik reportedly is being called up to play the outfield, but Boston is still short in that area. Middlebrooks also is making the potential plan possible with his stellar play. He is hitting .297 with five home runs and 15 RBIs through the first 18 games of his career.

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