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Dice-K to make Grapefruit League debut Thursday

Mar 21, 2010, 12:10 PM EDT

matsuzaka posing.JPGDaisuke Matsuzaka, who has been slowed in camp by a sore neck and back, is scheduled to make his Grapefruit League debut against the Marlins on Thursday (according to Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal).

Dice-K has been limited to games of catch and bullpen sessions as the Red Sox ease him back to full strength.  He won’t be ready for the start of the regular season, but there is some hope that we’ll see him in a Boston uniform by the end of April.  The right-hander had an ugly 5.76 ERA and 1.87 WHIP in 12 starts last season and battled Red Sox management over conditioning and rehabilitation issues.

Matsuzaka signed a six-year, $52 million deal with club back in February of 2007.

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