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Varitek speaks

Posted by Amalie Benjamin  August 2, 2006 05:03 PM

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Jason Varitek, limping noticeably and with a white bandage around his knee, spoke to the media at length this afternoon about his upcoming surgery (tomorrow) and his role with the team during his rehab.

Varitek said he did hurt his knee on the play at the plate the other night against Anaheim, aggravating it when he awkwardly hit second base on Monday night. Because of the placement of the injury, a partial tear of the cartilage in his left knee, Varitek is essentially unable to squat, rendering him unable to catch.

He talked to both manager Terry Francona and general manager Theo Epstein to determine whether he could continue to remain with the team in a limited role but, with the location of the problem, it was determined that surgery would be the best plan at this point, with the hope that the catcher will be able to come back and help the team for the last few weeks of the regular season and any postseason.

Varitek would not put an exact timetable on his recovery, saying that it will be determined mostly after the doctors perform the surgery tomorrow, and after the swelling starts to lessen and his flexibility starts to return.

Jason Johnson will be the starting pitcher on Sunday, with Kyle Snyder staying in the bullpen for now. Francona said Snyder can provide the team with the pitching they have been missing out of the bullpen, as witnessed in his four shutout innings of relief on Monday night, calling the move "more of a compliment."

Manny Delcarmen could see a return to action tonight, as Francona said he thinks he should be available for the night game against the Indians.

And, with that, the lineups...

Red Sox

1. Kevin Youkilis, 1B
2. Mark Loretta, 2B
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Manny Ramirez, LF
5. Mike Lowell, 3B
6. Wily Mo Pena, RF
7. Coco Crisp, CF
8. Doug Mirabelli, C
9. Alex Gonzalez, SS

P--Jon Lester

Indians
1. Grady Sizemore, CF
2. Jason Michaels, LF
3. Travis Hafner, DH
4. Victor Martinez, 1B
5. Casey Blake, RF
6. Jhonny Peralta, SS
7. Hector Luna, 2B
8. Kelly Shoppach, C
9. Andy Marte, 3B

P--Jeremy Sowers

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