08/29/08 6:30 PM ET
Sox place Beckett on disabled list
Boston ace has no ligament damage, could return Sept. 5
By Mark Remme / MLB.com
"Awesome," Francona said with a smile. "I guess from our standpoint. I don't know if he used that word."
The Red Sox announced on Friday that they placed their ace right-hander on the 15-day disabled list with a right elbow strain, retroactive to Aug. 18 -- one day after the righty allowed eight runs over 2 1/3 innings to the Blue Jays. That means he's eligible to come off the DL on Wednesday, and Francona said he hopes Beckett can start next Friday on the road against the Rangers.
Beckett arrived back to Fenway Park just before Boston's Friday tilt against the White Sox, and he was thoroughly happy with his trip to see Andrews. He went through the gauntlet: stress tests, a dye injection, MRI, etc. Everything came back clean.
"It was a big relief," Beckett said. "I don't trust anyone more than I trust him when it comes to this stuff."
The move opened up a roster spot for catcher David Ross to join the club before Friday's contest with Chicago. Ross was slated to arrive on Friday afternoon and be ready for the game, meaning Boston will have three catchers on its roster for the time being.
Francona said that Beckett recently threw a side session before heading to see Andrews, and the Red Sox skipper was rather pleased with the result. Still, the team wanted to make sure all doubts were out of Beckett's head before it moved forward with his recovery.
No one blamed Beckett for his concern.
"I think he just wanted to go down there and reassure himself that he's OK," Red Sox left-hander Jon Lester said. "I don't blame him at all. He makes his living off his arm. You want to make sure everything is OK."
Beckett is having a rather unconventional year by his standards, given his 11-9 record and 4.34 ERA. But no one will dismiss how valuable he can be to the Red Sox in their quest to go deep in the postseason.
Lifetime in the playoffs, Beckett is 6-2 with a 1.73 ERA. During last season's postseason run with the Sox, the right-hander went 4-0 with a 1.20 ERA.
"Fair scenario -- he throws that first day in Texas, a week from today," Francona said. "Looking at the rest of the year, that'd be a great day to start him back up and get back into the rotation."
Will this give Beckett peace of mind moving forward that his arm is ready to compete again?
"He said my ligament looked fine," Beckett said. "That's what I was afraid of, my ligament. Tommy John surgery, obviously a lot of people come back from it, but it takes a long time. That's what I was afraid of, with the stuff I was having going on."
Mark Remme is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.