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Bedard says lat injury ‘not serious’ but ‘frustrating’

09.14.11 at 8:29 am ET
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Erik Bedard last started on Sept. 3. (AP)

Red Sox starter Erik Bedard has never before been sidelined by a strained lat, but he has plenty of experience dealing with injuries throughout his career. And so, he understands the dynamic of the treatment schedule.

Bedard, who is 5-9 with a 3.50 ERA this year, including a 1-2 record and 3.66 ERA since the Sox acquired him just before the July 31 trade deadline, has not pitched since Sept. 3, when he experienced soreness in his left knee that impacted his command and velocity. While the pitcher said that his knee is no longer a concern, he suffered a mild lat strain while pitching with the injury.

And on Tuesday, he  said that he has still been experiencing some point tenderness in the area. He is not overly concerned by the injury (“It’s not that serious,” he said), but he has been told that he won’t be able to resume throwing off a mound until the region is pain-free. He did some light tossing on flat ground on Tuesday, but has yet to increase the intensity of his throwing program to the point of being able to throw a bullpen session.

At a time when the Sox’ rotation has struggled, going six straight games without a quality start, Bedard’s absence has been significant. He had been giving the Sox consistently competitive outings, while showing strikeout-an-inning stuff that suggested significant promise.

Mindful of his team’s situation, the left-hander said that he is eager to get back on the mound. At the same time, based on his injury history, he understands the sometimes-deliberate pace of the effort to get back on the mound.

“It’s always frustrating,” Bedard acknowledged of the time out of the rotation. “I can’t say anything more. I’m just day to day. … I’ve been through it before. It’s the same process. Day to day, and go from there when it’s time.”

Manager Terry Francona said that, with Josh Beckett pitching on Friday, Bedard has been ruled out as a possibility for Thursday against the Rays. However, the manager had mentioned a Monday day-night doubleheader against the Orioles as a hypothetical return date prior to Tuesday’s game.

“We know we have a doubleheader coming up next Monday and have to fill two spots,” said Francona. “He may be a candidate. He may not.”

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