Terry Francona was a bit more forthcoming about the medical situation with Tim Wakefield in the session in his office today.
Wakefield has now had two cortisone shots in his back this season, with the second one coming on Sunday morning, after his Saturday night start. Wakefield then did nothing on Monday, to let the shot do its work, before playing catch on Tuesday. That was where the problem cropped up.
“Because it’s who it was, it’s Wake, we wanted to give him every opportunity,” Francona said. “We actually intended for him to be on the roster. When he went out and threw [yesterday], then we started thinking we better sit down and re-talk through this. It wasn’t looking fair.”
So the decision was made, just before Francona talked to the press yesterday, that Wakefield was better served to work through the injury during the ALDS. Had he made the ALDS roster, and had to be removed because of injury, he would not have been eligible for the ALCS roster, and the team wanted to avoid that.
This is the same injury Wakefield dealt with during August, when he was scratched from a start that later allowed Clay Buchholz to throw his no-hitter. The pain is in the area between his back and his shoulder. While it could also be called a shoulder injury, Francona said, the team has been referring to it as a back problem thus far.
Wakefield played catch today.
“The schedule changed a little bit with us taking him off the roster,” Francona said. “We can now allow him to have the luxury of playing catch until he’s ready to throw on the side, not try to rush it.”
I’m headed down to the field to try to get Wakefield’s take on all this. I’ll be back with more updates soon. Can’t promise I’ll get Wakefield, but I’m on the case.