Tag:Dustin Pedroia
Posted on: October 6, 2010 1:06 am
Edited on: October 6, 2010 1:12 am
 

R.I.P. Red Sox: Injuries crumble promising year

RIP All eyes will be on eight teams starting Oct. 6 for yet another chapter of postseason baseball. As the sports world waits for the crowning of a new (or as the Yankees hope, repeat) champion, 22 other teams are busy preparing for spring training. What went wrong for these teams, and what does 2011 hold? MLB Facts and Rumors here at CBS Sports will be answering those questions through all of October. The Red Sox kick off the latest installment.

The Red Sox went into 2010 with an Opening Day payroll just over the luxury tax threshold. This isn't a common occurrence in Boston, as the club likes to hold cash back for midseason deals, but there was only one problem with that: Boston didn't have the depth to bank on these midseason deals coming to fruition.

In the first year of a two-year "bridge" plan to integrate top minor leaguers into the team, the Red Sox succeeded in putting together an excellent team. They just forgot to sign one person: Lady Luck.

Injuries dominated the entire season en route to an 89-win season, a failure in these parts.

WHAT WENT WRONG

Almost no one was immune from injury, with only Adrian Beltre lasting the entire season as a healthy position player. Here's a quick roundup around the diamond:

C: Victor Martinez broke his thumb and went on the disabled list for a month. Jason Varitek fractured his foot in a season similar to Dustin Pedroia's and also missed extended time. Kevin Cash and Gustavo Molina did a poor job of holding down the fort while trade-deadline acquisition Jarrod Saltalamacchia eventually caved to injury as well.

1B: Kevin Youkilis was headed to another MVP-caliber season before tearing a tendon in his right thumb, ending his season on August 3.

Dustin Pedroia 2B: Pedroia (pictured) went down with a left-foot fracture, missing almost two months before returning August 17 and quickly landing right back on the disabled list after a setback.

SS: Marco Scutaro gamely stuck in the entire season, but suffered from left-elbow tendinitis, a sore neck, a pinched nerve and a right-shoulder impingement. He eventually had to shift to second base to finish out the year once he no longer could make the throw from short. Expected backup Jed Lowrie missed the first half of the season due to mono, but could battle Scutaro for the shortstop gig in 2011.

3B: Only Beltre escaped the wrath of the injury gods.

OF: J.D. Drew somehow hung in there all season, strange from the poster boy of injuries. He paid for it with one of his worst seasons, while center fielder Mike Cameron battled kidney stones and an abdominal tear before hanging it up. Jacoby Ellsbury got a Beltre knee to the ribs and suffered through a season full of misdiagnoses, rehab, returns, setbacks and questioning of his makeup.

SP: Daisuke Matsuzaka's spring training was delayed with a sore neck among other issues, while Josh Beckett celebrated his lucrative contract extension with a back problem that knocked him out over two months with a lower back strain and couldn't put anything together on the mound.

While the bullpen didn't have many injury problems, it had plenty with ineffectiveness and was one of the worst in the leagues. The poor play of closer Jonathan Papelbon (and free-agent starting pitcher John Lackey) only served to compound matters.

WHAT WENT RIGHT

Clay Buchholz took the next big step and now pairs with Jon Lester -- who cemented himself as one of the best pitchers in the game -- to give Boston a young and incredibly talented top of the rotation. While Buchholz' 2.33 ERA is unsustainably low, there's no hiding his major step forward.

Daniel Bard impressed on the mound as well en route to becoming one of the most dominant setup men in the game, with many clamoring for his ascension to the closer's role in 2011.

Bill Hall shook off the cobwebs of the last few seasons, rediscovering the power stroke that enabled him to slam 30 home runs for the Brewers. His ability to play multiple positions was a lifesaver for Boston, which was able to deploy him where there were holes. Darnell McDonald came up from the minors as a veteran and made a splash in his debut, going on to establish himself as a fourth outfielder who can start against left-handers.

Adrian Beltre had a MVP-caliber season and established himself as a strong clubhouse presence -- but not when he gets his head rubbed .

HELP ON THE WAY

The Red Sox knew the minors wouldn't be of much help in 2011, and they were right. While players like Lars Anderson and Josh Reddick got their taste of the bigs, success was limited to just two.

One was outfielder Ryan Kalish, who imitated Sonic the Hedgehog in the outfield with his diving flip catches. Kalish struggled to adjust to major-league pitching but showed the talent and the guts to be named as a future 20 homer/20 stolen base candidate.

Felix Doubront zipped through Double- and Triple-A en route to making a few starts for Boston before joining the bullpen. Before his season was cut short to (all together now...) injury, he flashed the potential to make a major impact in the bullpen next season. His future in Boston likely lies in how the team addresses its shortcomings in the bullpen.

EXPECTATIONS FOR 2011

The Red Sox will be expected to win, as is always the case in town. Given the team doesn't have much help from the farm on the horizon, Boston will again have to turn to the free-agent market. The Red Sox have a hair over $100 million committed in 2011 salaries and only expected raises for Jacoby Ellsbury and Papelbon to factor in. That should give the team upwards of $50 million to play with, and they'll need all of it with Martinez and Beltre free agents.

SUGGESTIONS FOR 2011

Adrian Beltre Adrian Beltre should be high on the priority list. No, he won't match his 2010 levels of production, but will remain one of the best third basemen in the game. Even though all signs point to his departure, money talks -- and unlike last season, Beltre now knows what life is like in Boston and seems open to a return.

Victor Martinez should also see a return to town, as he can catch for at least a couple more seasons and give the Red Sox quality at the plate. Martinez' ability to play first base also helps matters. However, Martinez also has his own signs pointing to a departure.

If so, Boston needs to go out and get an impact bat, with five-tooler Carl Crawford the prize. Jayson Werth would also be a reliable stopgap, but nowhere near the level of Crawford. If Beltre doesn't return, Boston's best bet is to shift Youkilis to third base and go after a first baseman -- perhaps Carlos Pena. Pena combines defense and powers, and if you get lucky, can hit for a solid batting average as well.

The bullpen is a key area to be addressed and while it's not Epstein's M.O. to shell out big bucks for a bullpen (which is a sound strategy), it may be time to put that philosophy aside. Scott Downs is reliever who has two things most relievers don't: an ability to pitch with a left arm and to pitch well. Epstein needs to bring the bucks and get Downs into the fold as the complement to Daniel Bard. However, the soft underbelly of middle relief is also a problem. Fortunately, there's no shortage of strong right-handed relievers -- the only question is if Epstein will go bargain-basement hunting like usual or shell out for a solid option.

2011 PREDICTION

The Red Sox will come back loaded in 2011, just like they did in 2010. The minor-leagues will be one year closer to helping out, which will only serve to deepen the depth the Red Sox will need as the season winds on. Couple that with the Yankees' own question marks and the Rays' planned slashing of the budget after seeing integral parts of the team leave as free agents this offseason, and the road to the playoffs for Boston looks far less prohibitive than 2010's road did.

Check out the rest of the R.I.P. teams here .

-- Evan Brunell

Join MLB Facts and Rumors at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday to chat live during the Rangers -Rays game!

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Posted on: September 30, 2010 6:51 pm
Edited on: September 30, 2010 6:56 pm
 

Ellsbury, Pedroia on way back from injuries

Dustin Pedroia
Two important parts of the Red Sox offense, Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury, are both waiting and waiting for their injuries to heal.

Pedroia was knocked out of a .288/.367/.493 line in 351 plate appearances when he went on the disabled list for the first time on June 25 with a fractured right foot, then went right back on August 19 after a two-game return that left him in agony.

What was wrong?

It turned out to be a simple answer -- his tendon was wrapped in such a way that it was "pulling the fracture apart," Pedroia told the Boston Globe . Surgery fixed the problem, with a screw inserted into the bone.

The 27-year-old is set to resume baseball duties after Thanksgiving, barring setbacks.

"A little later than I would like," he said. "But plenty of time to get ready for spring training."

Sometimes, plenty of time isn't a good thing.

"It'll drive me crazy," he said of missing the playoffs. "We should have been in the playoffs. Be being hurt, Kevin [Youkilis] being hurt, it was too much. We could have done a lot of damage, dude."

Meanwhile, Jacoby Ellsbury has yet to resume baseball duties as well, with no activities since re-injuring his ribs on August 13, crashing into Tommy Hanson. That's something ballplayers do all the time -- crash into each other -- but this crash had more effect on Ellsbury than most.

"The play in Texas, that’s nothing to me," Ellsbury started off telling the Boston Herald . "[But] the bone was broke and we knew it wasn’t fully healed, but we were under the impression that even if I took a little blow it would hold up."

It didn't, as Ellsbury had five fractures of the rib from a collision with Adrian Beltre (pictured) on April 11 -- and even now, Ellsbury can feel discomfort when taking deep breaths.

"I was playing with five broken ribs that I didn’t know about. It just wasn’t healed," Ellsbury said of why the crash with the Rangers' Tommy Hunter knocked him out for the season. "Once it’s healed, I can do that 100 times in a row, and it’s not going to do anything."

Ellsbury clashed with the Red Sox earlier in the season, contending team doctors had misdiagnosed an injury and underestimated the severity of the injury. This led to Ellsbury trying to return too soon, suffering setback after setback until his aborted return to the lineup.

"If we let it rest, take 6-8 weeks, then like Dr. Yocum said, I would’ve been back in 6-8 weeks without any issues," he added. Instead, Ellsbury finished the season with a .192/.241/.244 line in a scant 83 plate appearances, stealing seven bases after leading the league with 70 in 2009.

Ellsbury is now at six weeks of full rest and has a checkup with Dr. Lewis Yocum in November and expects to be able to begin his normal offseason workout program on time. The lefty certainly needs a strong return to dispel any questions about Ellsbury's commitment to the game, as unfair as the speculation may be.

Ellsbury was questioned through the media by Kevin Youkilis, who wondered why he was in Arizona rehabbing the injury and not with the team. Fans and writers alike also questioned Ellsbury's durability, causing his stock to plunge.

"When I think of Jacoby, I think of a guy who got hurt, went through some tough times along the way, tried his best to come back and wasn’t able to because of the severity of the injuries and the repeated nature of the injuries," Epstein said, making it clear he doesn't believe there will be any hard feelings.

GM Theo Epstein for his part said that he wished he had gotten a scan of Ellsbury's ribs earlier, telling WEEI on Thursday via ESPN .

"It wouldn’t have gotten him back any quicker, but it would have helped managing the perception of the injury," Epstein said. "Jacoby took some unwarranted heat from a lot of different sources because it wasn’t clear right from the get-go that it the ribs were fractured."

With Pedroia, Ellsbury and Youkilis all set to be completely healthy for spring training, there's at least one silver lining to the Red Sox's lost season to injuries -- that no injuries should impact the next season.

 -- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .


Posted on: September 2, 2010 3:06 pm
Edited on: September 2, 2010 5:48 pm
 

Report: Pedroia to have surgery

Dustin Pedroia will have surgery to insert a screw in his left foot sometime tomorrow, the Boston Globe' s Nick Cafardo reports .

Pedroia was examined last night by foot specialist Dr. George Theodore in Baltimore and it was apparently determined he'll have season-ending surgery.

Just yesterday, Red Sox manager Terry Francona told the Globe that Pedroia's foot was "much improved from last week" and he added that he was encouraged by the improvement.

Pedroia was limited to 75 games this season because of his foot surgery.

What was more apparent was the way he was fawned over by Red Sox fans for taking ground balls with a cast on and rushing back with his team, while Jacoby Ellsbury was vilified because he didn't return from his ribs injury "soon enough." The tough guy act plays better with fans, apparently, even if it isn't in the best interest of the team.

Either way, the end result was the same -- both are out for the rest of the season.

UPDATE: Pedroia talked to reporters on Thursday and didn't confirm that he'd have surgery -- but didn't deny it either. He said he'll have a CT scan tomorrow and then could have the surgery later.

"I think that putting the screw in is probably the best idea," Pedroia said (via the Providence Journal ). "It's a 90 percent chance that the bone heals. I don't want to get to January, and get to my workouts, and don't feel good and then miss some of next year. None of us want that to happen. So I think putting the screw in is probably the best idea."



-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: August 26, 2010 5:49 pm
Edited on: August 26, 2010 6:02 pm
 

Report: Pedroia to be shut down

The Boston Globe 's Nick Cafardo is reporting second baseman Dustin Pedroia "will likely shut it down for the remainder of the season."

Pedroia returned from his broken foot last Tuesday, but lasted only two games before being hurt again.

He will be put in a boot for the next week and at that time will be re-evaluated, but Cafardo says a "major-league source" expects Pedroia's done for the season.

Pedroia spoke to the media before Thursday's game and said he didn't know if he needed surgery yet.

"It's OK, it's just not healing," Pedroia said (via ESPNBoston.com ). "Nothing I did to hurt it, just a bad spot. I will be fine."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Category: MLB
Posted on: August 25, 2010 5:25 pm
 

Pedroia may need foot surgery

Dustin Pedroia How does one go from taking groundballs off his knees mere days after hitting the disabled list with a fractured foot to needing surgery?

Who knows, but that's where Dustin Pedroia finds himself, according to ESPN Boston 's Joe McDonald.

Pedroia is currently back on the disabled list after making a two-game return last Tuesday from a fractured foot that sidelined him almost eight weeks. Scans of his foot were sent to two foot specialists to try to determine Pedroia's situation after X-rays showed the fracture was healing properly and was pain-free. The question is if his foot has stopped healing completely, which would force the diminutive second baseman to have surgery.

"We would like, for his peace of mind, for everybody's peace of mind, to get more information," manager Terry Francona said. "Then we'll move forward."

Bill Hall and Jed Lowrie have been filling in in Pedroia's absence. The two have been lights-out on offense, mitigating the loss of Pedroia although Hall's services are often needed in the outfield.

Meanwhile, the 2008 AL MVP spoke to perhaps the greatest basketball player of all time in Michael Jordan about the injury. Jordan suffered a similar injury in his career, and Francona said the conversation was productive.

"[Pedroia] had an interest in talking to him, and I don't bug Michael very much, but I thought because it was Pedey, he'd probably get a kick out of it, which I think he did," Francona said, who managed Jordan in the minors when the star made a brief foray into baseball. "It was a good conversation."

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Category: MLB
Posted on: August 20, 2010 4:22 pm
Edited on: August 20, 2010 4:28 pm
 

Pedroia back on DL

Dustin Pedroia Dustin Pedroia will have to wait a bit longer to deliver his laser show.

After being activated off the disabled list with a supposedly healed left-foot fracture, Pedroia was only able to play in two games before sitting out Thursday's game and going on the disabled list Friday. According to MLB.com's Ian Browne, Pedroia said there has been no further damage, but it's clear the foot isn't healed enough yet.

Managing only a 1-for-7 showing at second, Pedroia cannot return until at least September 1. When he does so, he will have a .288/.367/.493 line in 351 plate appearances.

With Pedroia out of action, Jed Lowrie and Bill Hall will receive the bulk of playing time at second. That means additional time in left for Daniel Nava, as Hall would have grabbed a few starts in left field. Instead, Nava and Darnell McDonald will assume the bulk of time in left.

The Red Sox previously placed Eric Patterson on the disabled list, so he is unavailable to replace Pedroia on the roster and grab a few starts of his own and second and left. As a result, 22-year-old Yamaico Navarro leapfrogs Niuman Romero to get the call.

Navarro was recently promoted to Triple-A Pawtucket from Double-A Portland and has only 53 at-bats to his name at the higher level. He hit .283/.339/.528 with three dingers, so is clearly on a good streak. For Portland, he was working on a .274/.358/.422 line in 329 trips to the plate. He has a reputation for being a good defender, albeit on the flashy side. He is a shortstop but has played third base a significant amount of the time due to Jose Iglesias' entrance into the farm system in the offseason. He'll provide a solid glove as a backup player.

Navarro is not on the 40-man roster, but there is space available so there will not need to be a corresponding move.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Category: MLB
Posted on: August 19, 2010 7:19 pm
 

Pedrioa out, but no need to panic


Dustin Perdoia A common question in sports is, "Is he hurt , or is he injured ?" Because there's a difference.

Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia was hurting Thursday and out of the lineup, but don't worry -- the Laser Show isn't on long-term hiatus. He was scratched when he came up sore after playing his second game since returning from a broken foot, but that's to be expected.

“It’s impossible to break your foot in the area I broke it and play 43 straight games,” Pedroia told the Boston Herald. “I knew that. They told me that.”

The bone isn't healed completely, but it has healed enough that it's safe to play. He's going to have to endure some pain, especially if he's going to do things like stealing bases, which he did Wednesday night.

"That probably wasn’t the smartest idea," he said.
Jed Lowrie replaced Pedroia in Thursday's lineup.

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Posted on: August 10, 2010 5:51 pm
 

Pedroia on verge of returning to Red Sox

Dustin Pedroia It looks like the Laser Show is back in on Boston, as Dustin Pedroia will finally rejoin the lineup August 17 against the Angels.

Pedroia worked out at the Rogers Centre, home of the Blue Jays, on Tuesday and came through with flying colors according to the Boston Globe . Pedroia wore cleats, did some running and fielded grounders.

"He did great," manager Terry Francona raved. "Today was by far the best day. It was one of those days when you kind of leap by bounds. I think we hoped that would be the case. Some days it's level and then you have a day like today. He kind of simulated coming out of the batter's box and then he's run straight. I'd say he was close to 100 percent speed-wise."

Pedroia will run the bases Wednesday and have an exam Friday back in Boston. Assuming he clears, rehab games will be completed over the weekend leading up to Tuesday. He will return with special padding on his cleats and will wear protective padding at bat on his left food, where he suffered the fracture.

"I know the rest of the way is going to be tough," Pedroia said. "But we're at a point right now where we're trying to make a run and make it in the playoffs and trying to win the whole thing if we can. I know I'm not going to be as fast as I was earlier in the year but I can make that up in the offseason."

Jason Varitek, who suffered the same injury as Pedroia a few days later, is a week to 10 days behind Pedroia's rehab.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.


Category: MLB
 
 
 
 
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