Web Analytics and Web Statistics by NextSTAT The Boston Sports Nut: Red Sox - coping with all those injuries

Friday, August 15, 2008

Red Sox - coping with all those injuries

The defending World Series champs are currently without the services of third baseman Mike Lowell (strained oblique), knuckleballer Tim Wakefield (shoulder), right-hander Bartolo Colon (back), and shortstop Julio Lugo (quad). Of those, Lowell's and Wakefield's absences are the most significant. Fortunately for the Red Sox, they've got the depth to withstand the injuries. Kevin Youkilis can slide over to third, and Sean Casey, who's been raking this season, can spot Youkilis at first, at least against right-handers. In the rotation, the Sox can get by with a gumbo consisting of the newly acquired Paul Byrd, the struggling Clay Buchholz, the close-to-returning Colon, and perhaps down the line the recently optioned Charlie Zink. In a related matter, Wakefield's shoulder is inflamed and not structurally damaged, and he was disabled retroactive to Aug. 7. So it's possible his absence won't be a lengthy one.

Elsewhere, the Red Sox improved in going from Lugo to youngster Jed Lowrie, and the highly useful Alex Cora is still around to fill in anywhere in the infield. Offensively, much depends upon Casey's ability to continue hitting until Lowell returns. On the other hand, perhaps a trip to the DL was just what the struggling Lowell needed (he's "hitting" .187 AVG/.253 OBP/.253 SLG since the break). Consider the Sox your AL Wild Card favorites.

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