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Hurt feelings

Pedroia pained by quick return to DL

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By Nick Cafardo
Globe Staff / August 21, 2010

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Dustin Pedroia badly wanted a chance to return to the lineup and lead the Red Sox to the playoffs.

Just two games into his quest, the former American League Most Valuable Player was placed on the 15-day disabled list yesterday to rest and protect his sore left foot. Pedroia fractured his foot June 25 in San Francisco when he fouled a ball off his foot. He didn’t return until Tuesday night vs. the Angels.

Pedroia also played Wednesday, when he went 1 for 3 with a stolen base, but felt soreness after the game and missed Thursday night’s series finale before undergoing a CT scan yesterday at Mass. General Hospital. While the scan showed healing and no further damage, the soreness was a red flag to Dr. Thomas Gill, who suggested Pedroia back off and rest the foot until the soreness goes away.

The Sox have not shut down Pedroia for the season, but if the team continues to struggle, there may not be much to come back to.

“I’m upset man,’’ said Pedroia. “I feel like I let everybody down. I can’t really do too much. I tried. So hopefully it heals up and I’ll get back in there.’’

The Sox are running out of infielders to fill the gaps. They resorted to 22-year-old shortstop Yamaico Navarro, who hit .274 with 8 homers and 55 RBIs for Double A Portland and then .283 with 3 homers and 6 RBIs in 16 games with Pawtucket. Navarro played some second base in spring training, but is mostly a shortstop. He likely won’t see much action in Boston with Jed Lowrie and Bill Hall both capable of playing second base.

Asked if his season might be over, Pedroia said, “I hope not. I’ve seen so many doctors, I’m kind of tired of seeing everybody, but I hope not.’’

After spending seven weeks on the DL, Pedroia played two rehab games with Pawtucket last weekend before his return to the big club.

Pedroia had no problem or discomfort at Pawtucket. He suggested then he wanted no part of time off to rest the foot from time to time.

But after Wednesday’s game, Pedroia didn’t feel well.

“I played those last two games, and tried to do it, then [Thursday] I couldn’t do much and today’s a lot worse, so they’re backing me off and not letting me do anything,’’ said Pedroia.

Did Pedroia try to rush back too soon?

“I don’t know. Maybe,’’ he said. “I played two games and I didn’t feel very well, but that’s part of the process with this kind of injury.’’

Pedroia was hoping to be able to play through the pain and soreness but “after the second day it was pretty much impossible to keep playing, so I got to let it heal. It’s not fun.’’

Pedroia was told there was no additional damage, but “from what [the doctors] told me it’s not all the way healed, so it’s going to hurt and that’s still at risk for other things so that’s why they shut me down.’’

Looking back, Pedroia acknowledges it probably wasn’t the smartest thing to steal a base Wednesday night, but he doesn’t think it made a big difference in the overall pain he’s feeling.

“Over time it wasn’t going to get better if I kept pounding on it, so I got to make sure it’s fine,’’ he said.

Pedroia won’t second-guess himself for trying to come back quickly.

“I was just trying to get out there and help us win,’’ he said. “I’ve got to make sure I’m OK. If I hurt myself bad, it could mess me up for next year and it could mess me up for my career. Hopefully, I don’t do that.

“I’m not excited,’’ he said. “I want to be out there like everyone. I want to be out there and help us win. I think that was part of my problem, getting out there and hurting myself, I guess.’’

Nick Cafardo can be reached at cafardo@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @nickcafardo.

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