Red Sox outfielder Victorino day-to-day with sore hamstring
The bad news: Shane Victorino left last night’s game after tweaking his hamstring during a steal of second base in the fifth inning, potentially re-injuring a nagging injury that has bothered him for the duration of his Boston tenure. The good news: the injury doesn’t appear serious and, though Victorino will likely sit out tonight’s game, he should be back soon.
Victorino has begun this season slowly, hitting .143/.302/.171 through his first 12 games in returning from several injuries which limited him to just 30 games last season, including season-ending back surgery. Despite Boston’s impressive outfield depth, manager John Farrell named Victorino his right field starter at the beginning of spring training, but that plan, while good-intentioned, is now looking questionable.
The Red Sox have a number of other outfielders that, at this point, may be more qualified than Victorino to hold down a starting job. Brock Holt, Boston’s versatile jack-of-all-trades, has hit .414/.433/.483 in the early going and it’s easy to envision him grabbing the right field job until he cools off. Though $72.5M Cuban signee Rusney Castillo is currently on the disabled list with a strained shoulder, he is probably the main candidate to steal Victorino’s job and could do so as soon as he is healthy.
Farrell and the Red Sox gave Victorino the job in the hopes that he could relive his stellar 2013 season. However, that’s appearing more a pipe dream than a reality at this point and he may not hold down the job much longer. Hopefully Victorino is able to turn a corner once he recovers from this setback, but the combination of his poor performance and the recurring of this hamstring problem could hamper his game the rest of the season. Enjoy Victorino while he’s around, because he’ll probably be on the trade block sooner rather than later.