BOSTON -- When left fielder Carl Crawford attempts to throw again, perhaps as soon as in 10 days, he'll have an altered throwing motion to help keep his left elbow healthy.
"There's a mechanic that we'd like to see Carl use, which I would think would be proper," manager Bobby Valentine said Tuesday. "There's a turn of the body, a step of the legs, a late rotation with the upper body rather than an early rotation with the upper body, and that's kind of a movement from the bottom to the top, a kinetic link from the feet to the place it's being propelled, so we'd just like him to start getting that linkage."
Valentine said Crawford requested the team's help in changing his mechanics. He hasn't played an organized game since last season ended. Crawford underwent offseason left wrist surgery, and in April he was diagnosed with a UCL sprain in his left elbow.
Crawford's been hitting off a tee and taking soft toss, but he does not expect a setback while hitting. Throwing is the rub.
"You got to remember, swinging was never the problem," Crawford said after taking 15 soft-toss swings. "That's going to be the true test. I can do all the stuff, but the true test is whenever I start back throwing and I finally get to see how that feels, and that's when I really know where I'm at.
"I think I'm about 10 days away, somewhere around there, two weeks, 10 days away from throwing."
While Crawford will eventually return to Fort Myers, Fla., for rehab games, Valentine said he wants Crawford's "throwing program, his hitting program to be supervised as much as possible, especially at the beginning," which may keep Crawford with the Sox for a bit.
As for a rehab timetable, Valentine mentioned 10 days of five at-bats as a possibility, but he said it'll be ultimately up to Crawford to determine when he's found his timing. Crawford said he doesn't know yet when he'll face pitching. Valentine said Crawford took 60 swings off the tee on Monday, a number that could be surpassed Tuesday.
McDonald set for at least one more rehab game
BOSTON -- Outfielder Darnell McDonald, who is on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right oblique, will get at least one more rehab game on Wednesday before being activated.
McDonald was eligible to be activated Tuesday, but he isn't where the team wants him to be physically.
"Today he said he could play, but he's not 100 percent and I told him I'd like him to be 100 percent, being he's on the disabled list," manager Bobby Valentine said. "And by the time he comes back, we'd like to have a player who's capable to go full bore."
McDonald went 0-for-3 and was hit by a pitch in Triple-A Pawtucket's 6-4 loss to visiting Norfolk on Monday. He's 0-for-8 in three rehab games with two strikeouts and no walks.
Pawtucket is home through Thursday playing Norfolk before going on the road.
Battling illness, Saltalamacchia exits
BOSTON -- Jarrod Saltalamacchia left Tuesday's 6-3 win over the Tigers after six innings because of an illness. The catcher was removed from the game as a precaution, according to the club.
He caught the first six innings and went 1-for-3 before Kelly Shoppach replaced him.
"I felt OK before the game. It kept kind of creeping in and then just kept getting worse and worse and then it didn't feel like it was going to get any better whatsoever," Saltalamacchia said. "It wasn't the right time to go out there when we're trying to win the game feeling like I was."
Saltalamacchia was on an IV as recently as Saturday after being dehydrated. He entered Saturday's game in the ninth inning as a pinch-hitter, crushing a two-run walk-off home run on the second pitch he saw to beat the Rays. Since then, he has started the last three games for Boston.
"It's just a little illness. It wasn't getting any better, just kept getting worse, but no dehydration or anything of that nature," Saltalamacchia said. "It's just something that came up and I should be good to go tomorrow."
He is not the first player on the team to feel ill this week.
"There's something going around," said manager Bobby Valentine. "[Will] Middlebrooks in the middle of the game yesterday was having issues. Just maybe that stuff going around."
Saltalamacchia homered over the Green Monster in the series opener against Detroit on Monday. He has four homers in his last nine games and is hitting .274 with 22 RBIs in 39 games this season.
Evan Drellich is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @EvanDrellich. Austin Laymance is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.