David Ortiz underwent an MRI Tuesday that revealed the Red Sox designated hitter did not have a tear or rupture of his right Achilles’ tendon.
Ortiz, who suffered the injury when he stepped on the bag rounding second on Adrian Gonzalez’s three-run home run in the eighth inning of Monday night’s 5-1 victory over the White Sox, will seek a second opinion in Miami Wednesday before a decision is made whether to place him on the 15-day disabled list. He is expected to be out at least a week if he’s not placed on the DL.
“Talking with some of the medical staff, they thought a 24-hour wait at least was something that gives you a different opinion sometimes,’’ said manager Bobby Valentine. “So we’ll wait at least 24 hours, or at least until tomorrow, maybe until we get a second opinion.’’
Wearing a walking boot, Ortiz showed up at the Red Sox clubhouse to receive treatment.
“There’s some inflammation in there and I’m planning on going for a second opinion and see if something happened,’’ Ortiz said before Tuesday night’s game. “Just got to go for the second opinion and see what’s up.’’
Asked if the team had discussed the possibility of placing him on the DL, Ortiz said, “We haven’t decided yet. After my second opinion, we’ll decide what to do.’’
Ortiz said he was in “a lot of pain’’ when he woke up Tuesday morning.
“Today was worse than yesterday when it comes down to soreness,’’ Ortiz said. “But it’s not torn, which is good.’’
Ortiz dealt with right heel bursitis last August. But, he said, “This is different. It’s the same area, but a little more soreness initially.’’
At no time, however, did Ortiz fear his season was over.
“I didn’t feel any pop, which was the first thing the doctor asked me [Monday] night,’’ he said. “He asked if I felt a pop, and I didn’t feel any of that.’’
Ortiz’s injury was emblematic of the Sox’ string of bad luck with injuries this season.
“It’s crazy, man,” Ortiz said. “One comes out, another one goes in. It’s like a roller coaster. But we’ll see. Hopefully it doesn’t take too long.”
Daniel Nava replaced Ortiz in the lineup at DH, hitting third.
Asked how he planned to assert his leadership, now that he was out of the mix, Ortiz smiled and said, “Just act like a cheerleader. There’s not much I can do about it right now.’’
Franklin Morales returned to the bullpen Tuesday as the Red Sox settled on a five-man rotation after using a six-man rotation surrounding the All-Star break. Morales didn’t have to wait long to make his first appearance out of the pen when he was summoned in the ninth inning and responded with a 1-2-3 inning.
“Morales gives us two lefthanders in the bullpen now,’’ Valentine said. “We always have him, if we need him, to start, but he was the logical choice because he was the only guy of the six who had been in the bullpen before.
“It’s not a permanent move, but he’s going to do whatever it takes to help the team.’’
The 26-year-old lefthander made five starts and compiled a 3.42 ERA while allowing 10 earned runs in 26⅓ innings. He also struck out 31 while allowing just eight walks.
Asked about his return to the bullpen, Morales said, “I don’t make those decisions. I’m just here to help the ballclub the best way that I can. I’m fine. I feel fine. I’m healthy and so I’ll continue doing my work. When another opportunity [to start] comes up, I’ll try to take advantage of it.’’
With Morales back in the bullpen, Clay Buchholz will draw the start Thursday night in the finale of this four-game series against the White Sox opposite lefthander Jose Quintana (4-1, 2.60).
Felix Doubront will start Wednesday night vs. Pedro Hernandez, who will be making his major league debut.
DH by committee?
With Ortiz out for at least the next week, Valentine was asked if he would use the opportunity to utilize different players in the DH spot to give some a day off in the field.
“I have all those options,’’ he said. “We can rotate guys through, if we want. I don’t see one person sticking out as someone we’re going to put there and say he’s replacing David Ortiz as the designated hitter. You don’t do that.
“But I think we’ll get some combinations of people that will help us score some runs.’’
Stealing the spotlight
Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford reached base in the first inning on back-to-back singles and each recorded their first stolen base of the season . . . White Sox DH Adam Dunn recorded his first stolen bases of the season, and first since Aug. 16, 2008, at Houston. Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia bobbled the ball and did not even make a throw. “It’s hit or miss, he took off as soon as [Jon Lester] lifted his foot,’’ said Saltalamacchia. “He had an OK jump and I didn’t hold on to the ball.’’ . . . Crawford became the first Red Sox left fielder with at least three hits and three stolen bases in a game since Roy Johnson did it May 21, 1934, at the White Sox . . . Kevin Youkilis is 4 for 8 with two doubles, a homer, 3 RBIs, and 4 runs in his first two career games against Boston.