, Gloucester, MA

March 9, 2013

Crunch Time

Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Ortiz frustrated

Red Sox fans got a dose of bad news Friday when manager John Farrell confirmed that designated hitter David Ortiz is frustrated with the lack of progress on his injured achilles, which held him out of the majority of the second half of last season.

Ortiz ran the bases for the first time this week but on Friday he only took batting practice. His status for opening day is very much still up in the air.

“He’s critically important to our lineup,” Farrell said. “He’s aware of that. I think that’s what kind of adds to his frustration -- not being able to get on the field and participate in spring training and get ready for the regular season. But because we haven’t come to that date where, ‘OK, Plan B is now a legitimate one’ ... I know those discussions will take place. But we’re still hopeful in taking the approach that he will be ready. But we’ve got to be aware that that may need adjusting.”

On the air

Gloucester track star Jacob Holscher will appear on North Shore 104.9’s North Shore Sports Desk this morning (8:00-9:00 a.m.) as the North Shore Student Athlete of the Week.

Holscher was the Northeastern Conference mile champ this winter and also placed fifth at the All State Meet and seventh at the New England Championships.

HGH testing near

The NBA is reportedly close to reaching an agreement with the NBA Players Association that would call for Human Growth Hormone (HGH) testing. HGH has been a banned substance in the NBA for years but has never been tested for. The only way to detect traces of HGH is through a blood test.

Recently Major League Baseball reached a deal with its players association to test for HGH and now it looks like the NBA will be following their lead. The NFL and NHL do not test for HGH.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru