If your going to be in Vero Beach to see the Red Sox-Dodgers game or watching it on television on Friday, you will probably be surprised to hear this in probably the 2nd or 3rd inning of the game: “Now Batting… #18… Daisuke Matsuzaka.”

During spring training when an AL team goes to a NL park, the NL team has the option of using a DH in the games or having the pitchers hit. Well since the Red Sox will be in an NL park, Matsuzaka will have to bat in the game. The Red Sox had tried to get the Dodgers to use the DH but they wouldn’t budge.

Fearing an injury to Matsuzaka, they have asked him not to swing while he’s at the plate.

“I want to swing the bat, but (pitching) coach (John) Farrell told me not to swing,” Matsuzaka told the Japanese media yesterday. “Josh Beckett told me I’m a natural hitter. I was born to hit.”

“We went out and got this guy to pitch,” Francona said, acknowledging that some pitchers find it hard not to swing. “Beckett was taking until the ball was 10 feet away (last spring). Then he couldn’t help himself.”

Matsuzaka was just 4 for 19 in his career batting in Japan. He had 1 homerun and 3 rbi’s as well.

I know I’d rather not see him swing or even bunt for that matter. It’s better to be safe than sorry right now.