Sox health report: Baseball Prospectus

March, 26, 2010
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Make sure you read Will Carroll’s rundown on health of the Red Sox health at, the terrific site run by John Perrotto.

Carroll reports the Red Sox lost 799 days to injury last season, at a cost of $13.15 million. That actually was under the MLB average, Carroll reports, and less than the previous two years. Over the last three years, the Sox have lost $53.4 million on days lost to injury.

Carroll, who uses a red, yellow, green system to rate health risks, flags Clay Buchholz as a red, primarily because he thinks it remains to be determined how Buchholz handles a major-league workload of 175 innings or more, and whether the Sox handled Buchholz in a smarter way than the Yankees did with Joba Chamberlain and their “Joba Rules.” His other “red” is J.D. Drew, for the obvious reasons. He gave both John Lackey and Josh Beckett yellows, and didn’t seem too concerned they would develop arm problems.

Here’s his take on David Ortiz:

“So if it was steroids, this is an easy story. David Ortiz has that shadow over him like many players, but his gregarious image helps shoo away some of the nastier blowback. If it was steroids, then unlike his friend Manny Ramirez, he's been able to pass the tests without any issue. If it was steroids, he won't be any better than last year. If it was steroids, he beat a test that netted almost a hundred of his fellow Dominicans over the past couple seasons. If it was steroids and not the wrist, his power shouldn't have come back after that terrible start at about precisely the time wrists tend to come back from injuries. Look at Rickie Weeks or Mark DeRosa, who had very similar injuries and very little steroid suspicion. If it was steroids, his age-34 season should trend more like Barry Bonds, rather than sliding downward, though we might expect a bit of a Willie Stargell-style resurgence if we didn't know he already swung for the fences every time up. Ortiz is in a contract year, he's healthy and happy, but you know what -- when he comes back, people are going to say it was steroids.’’

Gordon Edes

ESPN Staff Writer



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