BALTIMORE -- On Wednesday afternoon, Red Sox manager Terry Francona said that while it was not yet a 100 percent certainty that third baseman Kevin Youkilis would be out for the rest of the season, he suggested that the Sox and their three-time All-Star were nearing that point.
"I don’t know if it’s been ruled out. I think that the writing is kind of on the wall," said Francona. "I don’t think you’re going to see him play again. I wish he would, and he’s tried so hard and he’s been open to doing anything. I just don’t know that’s going to happen. I don’t think it’s 100 percent but it’s getting there."
That likelihood became a defined course of action on Wednesday, when the Sox placed Youkilis on the 60-day disabled list to free a spot on the 40-man roster for the return of right-hander Clay Buchholz, effectively ending the 32-year-old's season.
While no date has been set yet, Youkilis is expected to undergo surgery as soon as possible to repair the sports hernia that ultimately prevented him from being able to return to the field in September. By undergoing surgery at the earliest available date, Youkilis will maximize the time he has for a rehab and offseason workout program in hopes of ensuring that he does not have to suffer a repeat of his health struggles of this season.
In 120 games this year, Youkilis has a .258 average, .373 OBP, .459 slugging mark and .833 OPS along with 17 homers and 80 RBI. He earned his third career All-Star berth on the strength of a first half in which he hit .285 with a .399 OBP, .512 slugging percentage and .911 OPS, but hobbled by hip bursitis, a back strain and more notably a sports hernia that will require surgery once his season ends, Youkilis faded badly in the second half, spending 15 days on the D.L. for his back in late-August and then proving unable to rebound upon his return to the active roster at the start of September. He has not played since Sept. 15.
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