FORT MYERS, Fla. — How long will Will Middlebrooks be out due to the right wrist injury he suffered on Wednesday night when checking his swing awkwardly against Orioles right-hander Chris Tillman?
“A year or two?” he mused on Thursday morning, before cracking a grin.
He could afford to joke. After an examination by both Red Sox team trainers and a hand specialist, the third baseman was cleared to resume full baseball activity. Indeed, the key indicators of his health were so positive — Middlebrooks reported that he felt no pain, all strength tests indicated that there was no evidence of weakness and he showed no discomfort when the training staff manipulated his wrist — that the team did not feel it was necessary for him to be sent for either an X-ray or an MRI. Middlebrooks was even able to take batting practice on Thursday, less than 24 hours after being removed from Wednesday night’s game against the Orioles due to pain created by an awkward check swing against on an up-and-in fastball from right-hander Chris Tillman.
“His exam this morning was benign. He didn’t feel any discomfort when he was put through a battery of tests and he’s actually been cleared for all baseball activities, but I’m sure he’s going to take the day to just let it rest,” said Sox manager John Farrell. “But given the way he came out after the swing, it was obviously very good news this morning.”
The Sox expect that Middlebrooks will be able to play in Friday night’s game, so long as there are no issues that emerge in batting practice. For his part, the third baseman exuded confidence when he arrived at JetBlue Park for an exam on Thursday morning.
“I’m fine, man. Same as last night. Just scared. It scared me. I felt just an awkward feeling, awkward movement of the wrist. It was the initial zing of pain and that was it. I expect to be fine. I’m fine right now. I could have swung a bat last night,” said Middlebrooks.
Asked if there was concern about the possibility of recurrence of injury in the region, Middlebrooks said, “We hope [there] isn’t. It’s hard to tell right now. There’s no pain. There’s no structural damage. So initially, you’d say no. Hopefully it’s just scar tissue moving around and just broke it up a bit and that’s what I felt.”
Indeed, given that Wednesday represented Middlebrooks’ first hard (and, for that matter, awkward) check swing since a broken wrist wiped out the final two months of his 2012 season, that could contribute to the idea of the unusual feeling created by the swing.
“That was my third game [of the swing], and I hadn’t check-swung. Normal swings felt fine. Normal check swings will probably be fine, too. I just got caught in between and it was just awkward all around,” he said. “I saw [video of the swing] this morning. It didn’t look good. It didn’t look good. It just freaked me out. It was just a weird feeling. I didn’t want to take a chance with it because of the history of that wrist.”
Coincidentally, Middlebrooks was meeting with a representative about getting a padded batting glove on Thursday morning. However, that meeting had already been scheduled in order to discuss more protective options for the area that region of the wrist that Middlebrooks broke last year.
“I saw [the batting glove rep] this morning, and I was like, ‘God, they’re going to get a kick out of this,’ ” said Middlebrooks. “Today just happened to be the day that he came down here. He didn’t even know it happened. We tried some things with a shell, but everything was hard, and it was by that joint so I couldn’t move. They’re going to do some stuff similar to what they did with [padding for Dustin Pedroia's batting glove], with his thumb. It’s a thicker pad, but bendable. So we’re going to try to get a little bit over that area, which has nothing to do with last night. It’s just in case of getting hit.”
The biggest wound right now, he suggested, is to his pride, given the friendly teasing that he’s absorbing from teammates for his initial panic in the face of what now seems like it may be a non-injury.
“I’m not hurt,” said Middlebrooks. “I’ve got my tail tucked a little bit. That’s about it.”
The voice of the Super Bowl Kevin Harlan joins the show to preview the Super Bowl and talk about some the Patriots games he has called.
Tom E Curran joins the show on Radio Row to preview the Super Bowl and talk about the fraud Roger Goodell.
The playmaker Michael Irvin joins the show on Radio Row to talk about how special it is for a team to stay on top of the mountain.
Ben and Sam discuss ways to improve the NBA All-Star weekend, hand out of hardware, and give their Finals predictions
Jackie MacMullen, ESPN Boston, talks with MFB about Rondo being traded to the Dallas Mavericks, and how this will have an effect on the Celtics rebuild process
How have the Celtics looked after a couple weeks? Could they be a playoff team? These questions and more...
The Red Sox have taken over Foxwoods and Red Sox Manager John Farrell sat down with Mut and Bradford to talk about the roster and how the 2015 season is looking.
Red Sox pitcher Joe Kelly and 3B Pablo Sandoval sat down with Mut and Bradford. Joe Kelly had a few interesting proclamations. First he said that 95% of pitchers use some sort of grip enhancer, and then he said he was going to win the Cy Young. Pablo leaned over and promised 10 HR's, explaining to Joe that the trick is to set the bar low.
Mut and Rob are in on the Hot Stove Show this week and they're taking calls and talking about the Red Sox pitching as we are 5 weeks away from pitchers and catchers reporting to spring training.
Pierre McGuire talks about ways hockey players skirt the rules in the NHL and the development of Dougie Hamilton.
Pierre McGuire joins Lou, Christian and Tim to discuss the resurgent Bruins, the emergence of David Pastrnak, and former Boston College stand-out Johnny Gaudreau looking to trademark the name 'Johnny Hockey.'
We get our state of the B report from NESN's Jack Edwards, right in the midst of a 4 game winning streak and hot return for David Pastrnak.
Wrapping up the show's week on radio row.
Show favorite Mad Dog Russo joins the guys to look at Sunday's game and the response he has seen to deflategate.
Kravitz calls in to put a wrap on the deflategate this week's coverage. He details some of the twitter attacks he has received from Patriots fans.
Christian ran around Radio Row getting predictions form anyone he could find, which included being Green-Flied by Warren Sapp
Local Wiseguy Louie Merloni gives us the lines for Super Bowl XLIX
Adam Schefter, ESPN, joins Lou, Christian and Tim to talk about all the news surrounding Super Bowl XLIX
We help you gamblers out there by breaking down some Super Bowl Prop Bets.
Kevin Harlan talks about some of his famous calls from Patriots games and previews the Super Bowl live from Radio Row.
Tom E Curran joins the show on Radio Row to preview the Super Bowl and give his prediction for the big game.
Mikey, Mut and Lenny are talking about Roger Goodell's state of the game address and question and answer period from earl
Mikey and Mut are gearing up for the Super Bowl on the final show before the Patriots take on the Seahawks.
DeOssie joins Mut from Arizona to talk about how big the hype has been for this year's Super Bowl in comparison to other Super Bowl games in the past and how Seattle's defense matches up against New England's offense.
Jim and Pete talk about the final football game of the 2014 season. It's the Patriots and the Seahawks, and there's still fantasy football to be played!
Chris and comedian Mike Mulloy recap the final Raw before the Rumble and preview the Rumble itself.
Would you rather watch important games in the stadium or on TV? Also we discuss our worst experiences at stadiums.
Dale and Michael talk to John Brenkus about the tests he did in relation to deflate gate and the conclusions he came to.More from this show
Doyel knows the Patriots fixed the AFC title game and they now belong in the same sentence as the 1919 White Sox.More from this show