He'll return to the mound in Boston on Thursday, albeit for the opposing team in the first affair of a four-game set. The Indians right-hander will make his second career appearance against his former squad, with whom he won a World Series ring in 2004. On June 20, 2009, he took the loss in a 3-0 defeat while pitching for the Braves.
After scuffling to a 9-17 record and 5.05 ERA last season, Lowe has looked like his old Boston self in 2012, posting a 4-1 mark and 2.39 ERA through six starts. The 38-year-old said his last outing, when he limited a powerful Rangers offense to two runs in six innings, was his best of the season.
"The game is easy when you can throw pretty much any pitch whenever you want," Lowe said, "but it's gratifying when you don't really have that good of stuff against this tough of a lineup. To actually only give up two runs was pretty hard to do. Some of those innings I would never want to try again."
The Red Sox will counter with Lowe's former starting rotation mate, Josh Beckett, who missed his last start with tightness in his right lat. However, reports surfaced Wednesday that Beckett played golf last Thursday, one day after manager Bobby Valentine announced he wouldn't pitch Saturday.
Beckett headed back to Boston on Wednesday, so he was unavailable for comment. Valentine hadn't yet talked with his pitcher.
"He had a sore lat," Valentine said. "He wasn't an injured player, I know that. We'll take it from there. But I'm sure that Josh wouldn't do anything that's going to jeopardize his team or his season, I know that."
Beckett was also a focal point in reports last fall that accused Red Sox starters of drinking beer in the clubhouse during games in which they weren't pitching. In five starts this season, Beckett, a three-time All-Star, is 2-3 with a 4.45 ERA.
Indians: Choo gradually getting on track
Manager Manny Acta believes right fielder Shin-Soo Choo has been pressing at the plate amid his early-season struggles.
"At times, some of those guys, they want to do too much," Acta said. "As much as you talk to them, it's hard for them to understand that they're not going to go from .200 to .300. It's got to continue to be one at-bat at a time, continue to work and stay positive."
Choo has, however, shown signs of life. He extended his hitting streak to six games on Wednesday with a 2-for-3 performance that raised his average to .236. Choo missed six games earlier this season with a hamstring injury.
"He's shown some signs," Acta said. "Here and there he's done some good things. We need him."
Red Sox: Fenway Park announcer dies in car crash
Red Sox public address announcer Carl Beane died in a one-car accident on Wednesday in Sturbridge, Mass. He was 59.
The club confirmed that Beane suffered a heart attack, which caused the accident. Beane became Fenway Park's public address announcer in 2003.
"Just sad news, you know," David Ortiz said. "It's just shocking. His voice was pretty unique. I'm pretty sure everyone's going to remember that forever."
Will Middlebrooks, Boston's hot-hitting rookie third baseman, has been bothered by a tight left hamstring. The leg discomfort didn't keep him out of the lineup on Wednesday, but Middlebrooks did go hitless for the first time in his brief big league career.
Middlebrooks left Boston's game against the Royals on Tuesday after suffering the injury.
"It's nothing serious," Middlebrooks said. "It's not a big deal. It was just a precautionary thing coming out of the game."
In six games, Middlebrooks is batting .346 with three homers and nine RBIs.
Right-hander Josh Tomlin leads the Indians' rotation with seven strikeouts per nine innings. Last year, Tomlin ranked last on the starting staff with an average of 4.8 strikeouts per nine innings.
The Red Sox are 8-8 on the road but are just 4-10 at Fenway Park this season. They'll open their six-game homestand 7 1/2 games out of first place in the American League East.