Boston Red Sox fans held their breath when third baseman Will Middlebrooks looked to have re-injured his right wrist after checking his swing in the first inning of the team’s Spring Training game on Wednesday afternoon.
Middlebrooks’ rookie season was cut short in Aug. 10 of last year when he was hit by a pitch against the Cleveland Indians. It was an unfortunate incident considering how well the right-handed batter was playing. Middlebrooks was performing so well at the plate that Boston was able to trade long-time Red Sox Kevin Youkilis to the Chicago White Sox in late June. Boston clearly feels they have their third baseman for many years to come, even with a broken wrist weighing on his mind in the early parts of Spring Training.
The 24-year-old looked like he was going to swing at a fastball up and in, but decided it was better to check his swing. Unfortunately, doing so caused severe pain in his wrist. Middlebrooks clutched his right hand and tossed his helmet in disgust as he moved his way to the Red Sox dugout. Onlookers immediately thought the worst as I am sure Boston management did not like what they were forced to witness.
“It felt weird on the swing, an awkward thing,” Middlebrooks said. “Fastball up and in, started early, tried to check it. Don’t know if my hand slipped off the bat or what but it didn’t feel right.”
The good news is a medical exam revealed that there was no structural damage done to the aggravated wrist and that it was more than likely scar tissue breaking up after not being used for quite some time in that fashion. Middlebrooks has stated that he would like to get back to his workouts if the team’s medical staff will allow him.
The Greenville, Texas native batted .288 with 15 home runs, 54 RBIs, 14 doubles and 34 runs scored in 267 plate appearances last season. He still needs some work in the field as he committed nine errors in 175 total chances, but that is something that can be fixed in camp.