Red Sox get Pedroia back for playoff drive

BOSTON (Reuters) - Boston Red Sox sparkplug Dustin Pedroia will return to the lineup on Tuesday after seven weeks on the disabled list, giving the team a possible boost in their drive for a post-season berth.

The second baseman, named Rookie of the Year in 2007 and the Most Valuable Player the next season, was sidelined with a broken left foot and will return to action against the Los Angeles Angels after two minor league warm-up games.

He was batting .292 with 12 home runs and 41 RBIs before his injury in June.

Boston (67-52) is in third place in the American League East division, 5.5 games behind co-leaders New York and Tampa Bay, going into the opening game of their series against Los Angeles at Fenway Park.

The Red Sox will be gunning for their eighth win without a defeat this season against the Angels, who are sending Jered Weaver (11-7) to the mound against Boston's Clay Buchholz (13-5).

Without Pedroia, the Red Sox posted a 23-21 record. They were 44-31 with him in the lineup.

Boston, who have suffered a series of injuries this season, are still missing regulars Kevin Youkilis and Jacoby Ellsbury.

(Writing by Larry Fine in New York, Editing by Frank Pingue)