Tag:Daisuke Matsuzaka
Posted on: June 1, 2011 9:48 pm
Edited on: June 1, 2011 9:53 pm

Report: Matsuzaka needs Tommy John surgery

By Evan Brunell
MatsuzakaMere hours after manager Terry Francona said that Daisuke Matsuzaka would not undergo surgery and continue his rehab process after receiving a second opinion from Dr. Lewis Yocum, Nikkan Sports, translation courtesy Daigo Fujiwara, is reporting that the right-hander needs Tommy John surgery.

This doesn't come as a surprise given Matsuzaka's injury, but Francona reacted harshly to a Sports Illustrated report last week, calling the report unprofessional and saying Dice-K would not be undergoing Tommy John.

Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports added that Matsuzaka is leaning toward Tommy John surgery after Yocum found a significant tear and recommended the surgery.

“Diagnostically, everything is kind of the same,” Francona had told WEEI earlier Saturday after Matsuzaka received further consultation in Japan after the Yocum second opinion, in what is now a clear indication that everything is not diagnostically the same. “We have to figure how to best go about this. The player or pitcher has to have some opinion, too. But I think you’re always going to go about it non-operatively, first. That just seems like it makes sense to me.”

Matsuzaka was due back in Boston Wednesday evening and is expected to sit down with the team after Boston club doctor Thomas Gill and Yocum conferred. If true, the surgery will knock Matsuzaka out for the remainder of the year and at the very least the first half of 2012, his final year under contract with the Red Sox.

The club has been getting by in the rotation with Tim Wakefield and Alfredo Aceves, as the team has had to withstand an injury to John Lackey as well. With Lackey's return, Aceves is expected to return to the bullpen but it is questionable if the team can rely on Wakefield the entire year. That could put the club in the market for a starting pitcher at the deadline, unless they dip down to Triple-A where to prospect Felix Doubront is currently returning from an injury of his own.

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Posted on: May 24, 2011 3:46 pm
Edited on: May 24, 2011 4:20 pm

Francona refutes Tommy John surgery for Matsuzaka

By Evan Brunell

FranconaManager Terry Francona refuted a report from SI.com's Jon Heyman, saying that starting pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka does not need Tommy John surgery.

"He's not going to have surgery. He's not going to have Tommy John," Francona said Monday night to the Providence Journal. "Some reports aren't very professional. That's a shame. It's a shame that we have to do that."

Dice-K is currently in Japan for an unrelated personal matter and will see Dr. Lewis Yocum in California in a few days for a second opinion. He is currently on the DL for a right elbow strain in his ulnar collateral ligament, and reports are that he has a small tear. Tommy John surgery isn't that far-fetched with that type of injury.

Francona and the Red Sox feel that rest and rehab is the best route for Matsuzaka, although the Japanese right-hander is unsure if surgery is the better option, so Francona may actually be wrong there. In terms of Tommy John, however, this is a pretty strong refutation of possible surgery. That doesn't mean it won't happen, though. The Red Sox said prior to the season that they planned to play injuries closer to the vest and have shown this year that they will be less than forthright about injuries.

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Posted on: May 23, 2011 4:13 pm
Edited on: May 24, 2011 1:12 am

Daisuke Matsuzaka could need Tommy John surgery

By Evan Brunell

MatsuzakaDaisuke Matsuzaka could need Tommy John surgery, SI.com's Jon Heyman reports.
However, following Monday's game against the Indians, Red Sox manager Terry Francona denied the report.

"He's not going to have surgery. He's not going to have Tommy John," Francona told reporters (via the Providence Journal). "Some reports aren't very professional. That's a shame. It's a shame that we have to do that."

Matsuzaka hit the disabled list last week with a tear in his elbow ligament, according to Boston doctors, who prescribed a rest-and-rehab procedure to follow. However, the righty has requested a second opinion from a Japanese surgeon, which the Red Sox have granted. The question doesn't appear to be whether or not there is a tear; rather, if rest is the first step or if surgery should be conducted immediately.

If Matsuzaka is indeed out for the entire year, you can bet Boston will be in the market to trade for a starting pitcher. Tim Wakefield and Alfredo Aceves are currently filling the breach left by Dice-K and John Lackey, but neither are full-season replacements. It just so happens that the Twins are shopping Kevin Slowey, so there could be a fit there, especially if the Red Sox part with a reliever to help Minnesota's beleaguered bullpen.

Matsuzaka looked as if he had turned a corner back into relevancy in the early going, but after leaving his April 29 start early with elbow problems, he couldn't keep the momentum going. Before hitting the DL, he was 3-3 with a  5.30 ERA in 37 1/3 innings, with a career-high walk rate and career-low strikeout mark.

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Posted on: May 19, 2011 11:16 pm
Edited on: May 20, 2011 12:12 am

Red Sox get lefty Morales from Colorado

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Franklin MoralesThe Red Sox have added left-handed reliever Franklin Morales of the Rockies in echange for a player to be named or cash considerations.

Morales, 25, is 0-1 with a 3.86 ERA in 14 appearances this season.

Morales has also started 15 games in his big league career, but none since 2009. He was a starter throughout his minor league career until 2010, when he made 24 appearances in Triple-A as a reliever and another 15 relief appearances with Colorado. The Red Sox are currently desperate for starters, with John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka on the disabled list. The team also signed Kevin Millwood to a minor-league contract on Thursday.

Morales struck out 11 batters in 14 innings this season, while walking eight.

Boston designated Hideki Okajima for assignment to make room for Morales. 

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Posted on: May 18, 2011 5:04 pm

Dice-K to DL, out at least a month

By Matt Snyder

The Red Sox have officially placed starting pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka on the 15-day disabled list with an elbow injury. He's expected to miss at least a month, manager Terry Francona told reporters Wednesday afternoon.

The injury is not one to toy with, as the Red Sox's medical director Dr. Tom Gill released a statement saying:

“Daisuke experienced tightness in his elbow during his last start. His examination is consistent with a sprained ulnar collateral ligament, and strain to his common flexor mass. An MRI was obtained which confirmed these exam findings. He will be re-examined in two weeks.”

The ulnar collateral ligament is the one that, when torn, requires Tommy John surgery to repair. And we all know by now -- from reading all the injury reports on sports stars, of course -- that a strain is actually a slight tear. So if Dice-K kept pitching, the odds are he'd fully tear the thing and need about a season and a half of rehab after the ensuing surgery.

Matsuzaka, 30, is 3-3 with a 5.30 ERA and 1.47 WHIP this season. He put together stellar back-to-back outings in mid-April, but has been pretty bad otherwise.

He joins fellow starting pitcher John Lackey on the disabled list. In their places, Alfredo Aceves and Tim Wakefield will join the starting rotation behind the formidable trio of Jon Lester, Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: May 17, 2011 5:54 pm

Matsuzaka on way to DL; Bowden receives call

By Evan Brunell

MatsuzakaDaisuke Matsuzaka appears poised to hit the disabled list, as CSNNE.com's Sean McAdam reports.

Dice-K underwent an MRI earlier Tuesday and the results must not have been pleasing. Matsuzaka has been particularly disastrous since leaving his start on April 29 with a tight elbow.

To replace Matsuzaka on the roster, reliever Michael Bowden is joining the team. Bowden is likely not long for the club, as Dan Wheeler is nearing the end of his rehab stint. Still, the club needs someone to fill the breach now and Bowden will make his 2011 debut. The 24-year-old made his debut in 2008 and has pitched parts of each of the last three seasons. Overall, he's tosse 36 1/3 innings and posted a 6.69 ERA, although much of that comes from his 2009 stint. In 2010, he tossed 15 1/3 innings, posting a 4.70 ERA.

It's not yet known who will replace Matsuzaka in the rotation, but the odds are heavy that it will be Alfredo Aceves, who has been starting in Pawtucket and functioning as a long reliever in Boston. On Monday, Aceves nabbed the win with three innings in relief of Matsuzaka and Scott Atchinson.

Bowden has been impressive in Triple-A, tossing up a 1.59 ERA in 22 2/3 innings while whiffing 28 and walking four. It's unlikely he sticks in the bullpen, but with a few clean innings, can build up confidence in Red Sox brass.

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Posted on: April 29, 2011 9:44 pm
Edited on: April 30, 2011 1:05 am

Matsuzaka leaves with 'right elbow tightness'

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Daisuke MatsuzakaDaisuke Matsuzaka left the Red Sox game against Seattle in the fifth inning with what the Red Sox are calling "right elbow tigthness."

Matsuzaka left the game after the leadoff hitter in the fifth inning, Ichiro Suzuki, hit a ball up the middle past him. Matsuzaka threw five fastballs to Suzuki, the last at 87 mph and none faster than 88 mph. After the single, catcher Jason Varitek went to the mound and appeared to call in manager Terry Francona and the team's trainers. After a discussion, Matsuzaka came out of the game.

Matt Albers replaced Matsuzaka. Matsuzaka allowed three hits and three runs (one earned) in four-plus innings of work. He walked four batters while striking out four. His velocity started in the low-90s before slowing throughout his outing.

Justin Smoak's first-inning two-run double broke Matsuzaka's 15-inning scoreless streak.

Following the game, Francona said Matsuzaka will be re-evaluated on Saturday and is still expected to make his scheduled start Wednesday against the Angels at Fenway Park.

"I have an idea what's going on in my elbow right now," Matsuzaka said through his interpreter, according to the Boston Herald. "So I'm not worrying too much about it."

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Posted on: April 24, 2011 12:18 am

3 up, 3 down: The new 'Daily Double' in Wrigley

By Matt Snyder


Starlin Castro and Darwin Barney, Cubs. One of my first memories as a baseball fan is the 1984 season -- in which I watched games on WGN and the Cubs had a 1-2 punch atop the order of Bob Dernier and Ryne Sandberg. They, together, were nicknamed the "Daily Double." In the decade ahead, it's entirely possible the 21-year-old Castro and 25-year-old Barney can form one of the most formidable 1-2 punches in baseball. They were on full display Saturday in the Cubs' come-from-behind 10-8 victory. Castro went 4-5 (even though one hit was the product of Jerry Sands losing a fly ball in left) with two runs and three RBI while Barney was 3-5 with two runs and three RBI. On the season, the two are completely locked in. Castro is hitting .393 with a .947 OPS. Barney is hitting .323 with a .772 OPS. Each has driven home 10 runs, which ties them for second on the team behind Alfonso Soriano. And I have to report the hits aren't cheap -- both players hit the ball hard nearly every at-bat. While the pitching staff struggles, the offense is producing well beyond expectations -- and it's mostly due to the duo atop the order.

Brad Penny, Tigers. Look, the White Sox are struggling, specifically on offense. Regardless of that, it can't be denied they have lots of really talented hitters. And Penny took a no-hitter into the sixth. He ended up going seven innings for the Tigers, allowing only that one hit -- a questionable one at that -- two walks and a hit-by-pitch in a 9-0 win.

Daisuke Matsuzaka, Red Sox. He's kidding, right? Two straight stellar outings? What is this, the World Baseball Classic? I might have to quit snarkily referring to him as "Dice-BB." Matsuzaka was masterful Saturday night, working eight shutout innings, striking out nine and only giving up a single hit. He did walk three, but that's not awful for eight innings. He retired 20 of the last 22 batters he faced. Don't look now, but the Red Sox are 9-11 after a 2-10 start. If Dice-K keeps throwing like this, they're going to be in pretty great shape.


Ryan Franklin, Cardinals. The disaster of a season continues for the former star closer. He was booed more loudly than Brandon Phillips by the St. Louis fans and gave up the go-ahead two-RBI single to Miguel Cairo. He wasn't exactly put in a great situation by Tony La Russa with the bases loaded -- seriously, if you remove a guy from closing duties, shouldn't he get some low-pressure outings to build confidence? -- but still coughed up the big blow of the game. Again.

Fausto Carmona, Indians. He was carved up by a Twins offense that has been rather punchless in the early going. Sure, they did have Justin Morneau, but still no Joe Mauer or Delmon Young. And Carmona allowed seven hits and six earned runs in five innings. Worse yet was his four walks and one strikeout illustrate the lack of stuff he had. If the Indians are to prove this start is not fluky, Carmona has to pitch better than he did Saturday. Fortunately for the Tribe, it's only one game.

Jason Vargas and Josh Lueke, Mariners. The A's had been held scoreless for 18 straight innings heading into Saturday night's game with Seattle. Yet by the end of the sixth inning Saturday, they had scored nine times on Vargas and Lueke. Vargas needed 100 pitches to get through five innings, coughing up six hits, three walks and six earned runs. Lueke must have felt bad for Vargas, because he went out and gave up four hits, a walk and three runs in just one frame. Kevin Kouzmanoff, Cliff Pennington and Coco Crisp -- good guys and all, but hardly murderer's row -- did most of the damage for the A's.

BONUS UP and DOWN: Brandon Lyon, Astros. Lyon entered the game in the ninth inning with the task of holding onto a one-run Astros lead. He didn't. A Prince Fielder RBI double tied the game and Lyon had blown a save. He was left in the game, however, into extra innings and even took an at-bat -- one in which he doubled himself. He then closed the door in the 10th and earned the back-door victory. Not a bad night, but blowing saves isn't exactly good. Definitely interesting.

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