BOSTON — In the starting lineup Monday for the first time in 16 days, Eduardo Nunez had just two at-bats before his right knee injury was aggravated on a swing to the point he needed to be removed. Nunez has been out with a hurt PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) injury, which affects the back of the knee.
"We thought that we were more ready than we were," Nunez said. "I'll keep working. Keep positive and hopefully, in two more days we're going to try again.
"My foot got stuck at home plate and we didn't expect that. We didn't expect it was going to be that tough, so we're going to sit down for a few more days. We're going to keep working, do my treatment and hopefully in the series with Houston try again ."
The designated hitter in Monday's 6-4 loss to the Blue Jays, Nunez doubled in his first at-bat. In the third inning, he fouled a pitch away and his leg appeared to buckle under him.
Sox manager John Farrell and a trainer went out to speak with Nunez, who jogged briefly up the third-base line and swung the bat before he was permitted to finish the at-bat. Nunez lined out to third base and walked gingerly to the dugout, with a little limp.
That was it for Nunez, with Sam Travis batting for Nunez the next time up.
Farrell indicated before the game it was possible Nunez would still be bothered by the knee, but said "he’s not putting himself at further risk."
Farrell after the game noted, "We don’t feel like there was added damage, he just aggravated it."
The Astros start a four-game series at Fenway Park on Thursday.
New Red Sox manager Alex Cora has announced that, as expected, left-hander Chris Sale will be the Opening Day starter when the Red Sox begin their season nine days from now against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla. David Price will pitch the second game and Rick Porcello the third.
Cora told reporters in Fort Myers, Fla. that Eduardo Rodriguez would be in the fourth starter's spot if he's ready as he continues to recover from off-season knee surgery and left-hander Brian Johnson is preparing to be the fifth starter for now.
In Price's second Grapefruit League start on Tuesday, he pitched five innings and allowed two runs on three hits, walked one and struck out four in the Red Sox' 12-6 victory over the Pirates. Third baseman Rafael Devers, hitting .349 this spring, hit his third home run of the spring. Andrew Benintendi (.405) had a double and two RBI and first baseman Sam Travis drove in three.
Sale had a much rougher outing Monday, giving up four runs on five hits, with three walks and six strikeouts in five innings against the Phillies.
Mookie Betts and Aaron Judge are about to go global.
Red Sox CEO Sam Kennedy on Monday confirmed the Sox are interested to play the Yankees in London during next year's regular season. Bloomberg reported the clubs are nearing an agreement to play two games there in June 2019. Discussions are indeed taking place, but a deal is not done.
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“We would love to participate in a series in London against the Yankees but this is a decision that MLB and the MLBPA will make," Sox CEO Sam Kennedy said.
Bloomberg reported the games would be played at London Stadium, which was the main facility for the 2012 summer Olympics.
MLB has not played any games in Europe before. The Red Sox have made trips before, including to Japan before the 2008 season.