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Pedroia’s checkup is OK

He just has bone bruise on kneecap

By Peter Abraham
Globe Staff / June 10, 2011

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NEW YORK — Dustin Pedroia was not with the Red Sox for last night’s 8-3 victory at Yankee Stadium, because he returned to get his sore right knee checked out in Boston. The second baseman was found to have only a bone bruise on his kneecap and could return to the lineup in Toronto tonight.

Pedroia had what manager Terry Francona called a “very minimally invasive’’ procedure done by team medical director Tom Gill to determine the extent of his cartilage damage.

The Red Sox have a day off Monday, but Francona said the examination was done yesterday at Massachusetts General Hospital because Pedroia complained about the pain.

“It got to the point the other night where it was starting to grab at him a little bit,’’ said Francona. “The more we talked, we didn’t want to put it off. This is just something to make sure he’s OK.’’

Pedroia injured his knee May 14, 2010, in Detroit when he tried to score from second on a single by David Ortiz and was thrown out at the plate. He reinjured the knee May 16 of this season at Fenway Park against Baltimore.

In that game, Brian Roberts led off the game with a line drive that struck Daisuke Matsuzaka in the chest and deflected away. Pedroia charged the ball and threw to first while diving and came down on his knee.

“He’s got a little bit of a cartilage issue in there,’’ said Francona. “We’ve known that for a long time.’’

Pedroia also is playing with a steel screw in his left foot, the result of a broken bone suffered last June. He acknowledged Wednesday that the injuries to his legs have affected his hitting but said he was hoping to finish the season without needing surgery.

He is hitting .247 with a .338 on-base percentage. He also has struck out 39 times in 275 plate appearances, only six fewer times than he did in 714 plate appearances in 2009.

Buchholz ready Clay Buchholz originally was scheduled to face the Yankees Wednesday night but watched from the dugout as Tim Wakefield took the mound and earned the victory.

Buchholz was given two extra days off to rest a sore lower back and will start against the Blue Jays tonight. The time off, he said, was helpful.

“I still feel it a little bit, but it has been getting a lot better,’’ the righthander said. “I think they did the right thing pushing me back.’’

Buchholz complained of back pain after he pitched against the Tigers May 29 and acknowledged that it was on his mind when he faced the Athletics last Friday. He allowed eight earned runs over 10 2/3 innings in the two games.

The Sox are expecting to see an improved Buchholz tonight.

“He’s ready to go, he’s good,’’ Francona said. “I think it was good that we did it and I think it will help him.’’

Chamberlain on DL Yankees reliever Joba Chamberlain has a torn ligament in his right elbow and is expected to undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery.

Chamberlain was placed on the disabled list Wednesday, but at the time, he was not believed to have a serious injury.

“It’s a shock,’’ he said.

Chamberlain had a 0.38 ERA in 19 relief appearances in 2007. He has since alternated between starter and reliever, with mixed results. The well-chronicled “Joba Rules’’ limited his innings with the intent of protecting his health.

Long delay Last night’s game started at 10:32 p.m. after a delay of 3 hours and 27 minutes . . . Jed Lowrie was penciled in at shortstop last night after missing two games with a sore left shoulder. . . . Jarrod Saltalamacchia spent Wednesday night in a Manhattan hospital receiving intravenous treatments after missing a game because of flu-like symptoms. He took batting practice last night. The Sox added Luis Exposito as a backup catcher Wednesday but could swap him for a relief pitcher as soon as today . . . Lefthanded reliever Franklin Morales, out with a forearm strain, will start a rehabilitation assignment with Pawtucket today and is scheduled to pitch. Morales also is expected to pitch on Sunday and then be reevaluated . . . The Red Sox play their first interleague road game June 24 in Pittsburgh. Jon Lester has started to prepare by taking a few rounds of early batting practice . . . Francona was asked whether the Red Sox took any extra precautions with their players because of the high humidity in New York. “We always try to stay liquidated,’’ Francona said. “I showed up like I always do and had some nachos.’’

Peter Abraham can be reached at pabraham@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @peteabe.

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