Lowell's right thumb holding up trade to Texas

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This week’s proposed trade of Mike
Lowell and cash to the Rangers for catcher Max Ramirez currently stands
in transaction limbo. Why?
Blame Lowell’s right thumb.



The Rangers are reportedly satisfied
with the status of Lowell’s right hip, but they are reviewing an injury
to Lowell’s thumb that hampered him over the final weeks of the ’09
season.




“There are still things to go over,” Red Sox assistant general manager Ben Cherington said yesterday. “It would not be a complete surprise if it didn’t happen.”



Terry Francona hasn’t yet spoken to
Lowell since the trade was agreed to in principle, but it would be
pretty darn awkward if this one fell through.

Joe Musgrove shut down with ab discomfort

Joe Musgrove
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Pirates right-hander Joe Musgrove is done for the year after suffering an abdominal wall muscle strain and stress reaction in his pelvic bone. While he isn’t expected to undergo surgery or miss additional time in 2019, he’s been prescribed six weeks of rest before resuming any baseball-related activities.

Musgrove, 25, finished out his third year in Pittsburgh with a 6-9 record in 19 starts, backed by a 4.06 ERA, 1.8 BB/9, and 7.8 SO/9. Despite logging a career-high 115 1/3 innings at the major league level, he’s also been dogged by a string of injuries, from the shoulder strain that robbed him of eight weeks at the start of the season to an index finger infection that kept him sidelined for a minimum 10-day stay on the disabled list in June.

While he works his way back up to full strength yet again, rookie right-hander Nick Kingham is expected to cover for him and will make a spot start during the Pirates’ series finale against the Brewers on Sunday. The 26-year-old righty hasn’t started a single game for the team since August 1, and currently carries a 4.69 ERA, 2.7 BB/9, and 8.1 SO/9 over 71 innings out of the rotation and bullpen.