WASHINGTON — Josh Beckett and Andrew Bailey were in Cleveland Tuesday to get second opinions on their right thumbs. While Beckett is expected to pitch in Game 2 against the Detroit Tigers Saturday afternoon, Bailey’s thumb issue is likely to land him on the disabled list and keep him out of the Opening Day roster.
General manager Ben Cherington indicated Beckett had gone to Cleveland “to gather information” on his sore right thumb while Bailey’s situation seemed more serious.
“We’re proceeding as if he’s not going to be on the roster Opening Day,” Cherington said of Bailey. “But until we get more information I won’t speculate on what may or may not happen. It’s clear he has an injury and we’re still trying to figure out the best way we’re going to deal with it.”
When asked if had any idea how long the team could be without Bailey, Sox manager Bobby Valentine replied, “Oh, I think a while.”
Did that mean days, weeks, or months?
“Possibly all of the above,” Valentine said.
Asked to describe the difference in Beckett’s and Bailey’s thumb issues, Cherington said, “Josh has had some soreness off and on this spring that he’s tried to pitch through. We took the opportunity at a time between his last outing and his extended side – his 100-pitch side he threw in Fort Myers to Game 2 to let him gather as much information as possible so that we can help him manage it, if that’s possible.
“He’s not that concerned about it and I expect him to pitch Game 2, so it’s mostly information gathering at this point.
As for Bailey’s injury? “[It] is different because we think it’s more an of acute injury,” Cherington said. “We think it was suffered when he was in a collision in Bradenton [March 21]. He was covering first and collided with Alex Presley and fell.
“At the time, he didn’t think anything of it, but he started to experience some soreness shortly after that and then went back and looked back at the video and he definitely landed on the thumb. He never had any thumb soreness before that. You never know for sure, but that’s a possibility that’s what did it. Any time you have more of an acute injury you have to get to the bottom of how bad it is and whether it can be managed conservatively or not.”
Asked if the nature of Bailey’s injury was muscle or bone-related, Cherington said, “We’re still trying to gather information. We can eliminate one issue; it’s not a bone issue, I can tell you that, so we can eliminate some stuff, but until we get more we can’t say anything more formally than that.
“If a procedure is necessary I would think it would happen soon, but we’re not at that point yet.”