Report: Jacoby Ellsbury out at least six weeks with shoulder dislocation

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UPDATE: Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com reports that Ellsbury does indeed have a dislocation or partial dislocation of his right shoulder and will miss a minimum of six weeks. He is scheduled to undergo more testing to make sure the shoulder did not sustain additional damage.

10:04 PM: Alex Speier of WEEI.com was told by an “industry source with knowledge of the situation” that Ellsbury likely suffered a dislocation or subluxation of his right shoulder.

The Red Sox have yet to make an official announcement on his status, but if Speier’s report proves correct, Ellsbury could miss up to six to eight weeks. There’s also the possibility that he could need season-ending surgery if the shoulder fails to respond to rest and rehabilitation.

8:49 PM: According to Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald, Jacoby Ellsbury was sent to Massachusetts General Hospital in order to undergo tests, including an MRI exam, on his right shoulder. Ellsbury left this afternoon’s game against the Rays in the bottom of the fourth inning after sliding into second base and having Reid Brignac fall directly on top of him.

The full extent of the injury isn’t yet known, but the Red Sox are already preparing for life without him. At least for a little while. Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said the club is planning to make a roster move and Triple-A Pawtucket radio announcer Aaron Goldsmith notes that prospect outfielder Che-Hsuan Lin was scratched from tonight’s lineup. Seems like he’ll get the call.

In the interim, the Red Sox will likely start Darnell McDonald, Cody Ross and Ryan Sweeney from left to right in the outfield while Mike Aviles figures to slide into the leadoff spot. Be afraid, American League hurlers.

2017 Preview: The American League Central

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League Central

Do the Indians have a weakness? Do the Tigers and Royals have one more playoff push in them or do they have to start contemplating rebuilds? The White Sox and Twins are rebuilding, but do either of them have a chance to be remotely competitive?

As we sit here in March, the answers are “not really,” “possibly,” and “not a chance.” There are no games that count this March, however, so they’re just guesses. But educated ones! Here are the links to our guesses and our education for all of the clubs of the AL Central:

Cleveland Indians
Detroit Tigers
Kansas City Royals
Chicago White Sox
Minnesota Twins

2017 Preview: The National League East

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the National League East

The Washington Nationals crave a playoff run that doesn’t end at the division series. The Mets crave a season in which they don’t have a press conference about an injured pitcher. The Marlins are trying to put the nightmare of the end of the 2016 behind them. The Phillies and Braves are hoping to move on from the “lose tons of games” phase of their rebuilds and move on to the “hey, these kids can play!” phase.

There is a ton of star power in the NL East — Harper, Scherzer, Cespedes, Syndergaard, Stanton, Freeman — some great young talent on ever roster and, in Ichiro and Bartolo, the two oldest players in the game. Maybe the division can’t lay claim to the best team in baseball, but there will certainly be some interesting baseball in the division.

Here’s how each team breaks down:

Washington Nationals
New York Mets
Miami Marlins
Philadelphia Phillies
Atlanta Braves