UPDATE: Chris Young will replace Eduardo Nunez on the Red Sox postseason roster.
Eduardo Nunez replaced on roster by Chris Young officially.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) October 6, 2017
HOUSTON — Four pitches into Game 1 of the American League Division Series against Justin Verlander and the Astros, the Red Sox suffered a significant loss.
Eduardo Nunez was carried off the field at Minute Maid Park, coming up lame as he ran out a ground ball and falling to the ground in foul territory close to first base. Sox manager John Farrell and assistant trainer Masai Takahashi carried Nunez off the field.
The team said Nunez suffered a re-aggravation of his right knee injury, which has been called a PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) injury. His series for the status was announced during the game as "to be determined," but the scene didn't suggest reason for positivity. If the Sox replace Nunez on the roster, the infielder could not play again in the postseason until the World Series, per MLB rules, even if he were healthy enough to play in the second round.
Nunez was the starting designated hitter Thursday. Hanley Ramirez replaced him.
Nunez was first hurt on Sept. 9, sliding into second base. The infielder's first and only game back in the regular season was Sept. 25, when he also left the game with what the team called a re-aggravation.
"If he feels a little bit of a zinger, that’s going to go away," Farrell said before that game. "He’s not putting himself at further risk."
Nunez came out of that game early when his spike got caught coming out of the box. His spikes were modified and the Sox built him up with drills, including those breaking out of the box. But as players and managers often say, nothing simulates game speed.
The Red Sox' choice to bring Nunez back on Sept. 25 is highly questionable if the injury is related to the knee and Nunez has to be removed from the Division Series roster.