Ross (broken foot) expected to be out two months

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Ross (broken foot) expected to be out two months

BALTIMORE -- The Red Sox injury situation went from bad to dire Monday afternoon with the news that outfielder Cody Ross has a broken navicular bone in his left foot, sending him to an increasingly crowded disabled list.

Ross fouled a ball off his foot Friday night but, after reporting improvement the next night, believed he might only miss a few days.

But with pain persisting in his left foot, Ross was sent back to Boston Sunday night and underwent an MRI on the foot, which revealed the broken bone.

There was no timetable announced for Ross' return.

Second baseman Dustin Pedroia broke the same bone in his foot in late June of 2010 and, after returning for two games in mid-August, missed the remainder of the season.

There is hope, however, that Ross's break is not as severe as Pedroia's, meaning his recovery time could potentially be shorter. Either way, it's expected he could miss as long as two months.

His absence will be felt in the lineup. Only David Ortiz (9) has more homers on the Red Sox, and Ross's slugging percentage of .534 ranked him behind only Ortiz (.606) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (.583) among regulars.

Ross will soon give the Red Sox an astounding six outfielders on the disabled list at once, when he joins Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jason Repko, Danell McDonald and Ryan Kalish. His injury may force the Red Sox to get creative with their remaining healthy players.

The Sox played Adrian Gonzalez in right field for two games in Philadelphia, principally to get Ortiz some playing time at first, with the DH unavailable to them in N.L. parks.

Now, Bobby Valentine may have to consider playing Gonzalez in right field to allow Kevin Youkilis (set to be activated Tuesday) to play some first while enabling Will Middlebrooks at third.

Until Ross went down, it seemed certain that Middlebrooks was headed back to Pawtucket, where he could play every day. The thinking may have changed, however.

"If general manager Ben Cherrington and I decided that (keeping Middlebrooks)
was something we should pursue,'' said Valentine, "there's a way to make it work.''

The Sox don't want to use either Middlebrooks or Ortiz in the outfield.

"It's a balancing thing,'' said Valentine. "It's a tough little situation.''

Asked about using Gonzalez in right, Youkilis at first and Middlebrooks at third, Valentine said: "That probably could be part of the discussion.''

But when Valentine was reminded of the challenges involved in playing right field at Fenway, he acknowledged: "That gives me some concern.''

After strong bullpen session, Koji Uehara could be back by Labor Day

After strong bullpen session, Koji Uehara could be back by Labor Day

BOSTON - For a bullpen that could use all the help it can get right now, there's the prospect that Koji Uehara could rejoin the Red Sox on Labor Day.

Uehara, who's been out since July 20 with a strained pectoral muscle, threw a bullpen Monday at Fenway that impressed John Farrell.

"He came out of today's work session in good fashion,'' said Farrell. "It was 25 pitches to hitters with good intensity to both his fastball and split. It's been impressive to see how he's handled the volume, and now, three times on the mound, the intensity to his bullpens and BP.''

Next up for Uehara will be a bullpen session Wednesday morning, followed by a live batting practice session Saturday in Oakland.

Since both Pawtucket's and Portland's seasons are over on Labor Day, Uehara won't have the option of going on a rehab assignment to face hitters before being activated.

But the Sox believe that he can build arm strength through these side sessions and BP sessions -- enough so that he could return to the active roster soon.

"We'll re-assess where is after Sunday,'' said Farrell, "and I wouldn't rule out activation [after that]. What we've done with Koji is just review how he feels after each session and we'll take it from there.''

Uehara, 41, is 2-3 with a 4.50 ERA, and while he's had a propensity for giving up homers (eight in just 36 innings), he had been throwing better before being injured.

And given the performance of the bullpen in general and the recent poor showings from Matt Barnes, the Sox would welcome Uehara back as soon as he's ready.

"The one thing that Koji has proven to us,'' noted Farrell, "is that, even with limited spring training work [in the past], he's been a very effective pitcher for us and obviously, he has a chance to make a very positive impact once he does return.''

Uehara's progress since late July has been a pleasant surprise for the Sox, who feared at the time of the injury that he might be done for the season.     

"To his credit,'' said Farrell, "he's worked his tail off and advanced fairly rapidly and he's withstanding the intensity that he's put into [the work]. A healthy Koji certainly adds to our bullpen.

 

Red Sox among ‘roughly half’ of MLB who’ll attend Tebow workout Tuesday

Red Sox among ‘roughly half’ of MLB who’ll attend Tebow workout Tuesday

Maybe Tim Tebow could be the eighth-inning guy? 

OK, OK. Maybe not. Still, the Red Sox will be among the “roughly half” of the MLB teams who will attend the former Heisman Trophy winner and Patriots’ 2013 training camp phenomenon’s baseball tryout on Tuesday in Los Angeles.

Tebow is 29 and hasn’t played organized baseball since he was a junior in high school. He was an All-State performer in Florida back then.

Based on his accuracy and mechanics throwing a football, maybe DH would suit Tebow better than the mound.