posted on Mar, 19 2004 @ 03:50 PM
The Red Sox were extremely fortunate in their ability
to avoid injuries last season, but there seems an increasing likelihood that the Sox could be without two of their best players on Opening Day
2004.Boston's Trot Nixon will be sidelined until May with a back injury and Red Sox teammate Nomar Garciaparra could miss opening day because of a
Nixon has a mildly herniated disc in his back. He has not played at all this spring.Garciaparra had an MRI exam that showed mild tendinitis in his
right Achilles' tendon.Manager Terry Francona plans to move first baseman Kevin Millar to right field and second baseman Pokey Reese to shortstop
until Nixon and Garciaparra return.David Ortiz, Boston's designated hitter, figures to see more time at first base, and Gabe Kapler will play right
field when Millar is at first. Mark Bellhorn is the primary backup infielder.Nixon should be ready to play in a major league game in six weeks.
The Red Sox are hopeful Garciaparra can play in two weeks, around the time of the opener at Baltimore on April 4.Though Garciaparra could not be
reached for comment, there were indications that he will need to rest an additional week or longer.That would bring him back on March 25 at the
earliest - 10 days before the Sox' April 4 opener in Baltimore. Garciaparra has had only eight official spring at-bats to date, raising the question
of whether he will have enough time to prepare for the start of the regular season.
[Edited on 19/3/04 by TRD]