Victor Martinez not close to returning from fractured thumb

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When the Red Sox placed Victor Martinez on the disabled list last month the expectation was that he’d be ready to return shortly after the All-Star break, but according to Amalie Benjamin of the Boston Globe “that doesn’t appear to be the case any longer.”
Benjamin reports that “there continues to be no timeline for when Martinez will return” from a fractured thumb, for which he’s still wearing a splint.
Here’s what Martinez had to say about his status:

It’s getting a little better. Swelling’s going down. Still feeling pain, but we’ll see. Just taking it day-by-day. As soon as the pain goes down, I’m going to be able to at least put my glove on there and go out there and play. Unfortunately I just can’t put my hand in the glove. That’s the thing. Pain, still.

Jason Varitek is also on the DL with a fractured foot and likely won’t be ready to return until some point next month, so the Red Sox may be stuck with the Triple-A caliber duo of Kevin Cash and Gustavo Molina behind the plate for a while.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.