Boston Red Sox Closer Andrew Bailey Facing Surgery

Michael NargiSenior Analyst IApril 2, 2012

FORT MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 26: Andrew Bailey #40 of the Boston Red Sox poses for a portrait on February 26, 2012 at jetBlue Park in Fort Myers, Florida.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

The Boston Red Sox are already in trouble, and the season has not even started. Their closer, Andrew Bailey, has been dealing with a thumb injury. The Boston Globe reported on Monday, however, that Bailey will be facing thumb surgery pending a second opinion.

He will see a second doctor and if both doctors agree, the Sox will start the season without a closing pitcher. This can be detrimental to Boston just days before the season begins.

If the diagnosis is confirmed by Dr. Thomas Graham, then a surgery might be performed on Tuesday. The quicker the better for the Red Sox, as the recovery time will not be determined until after the surgery is performed.

The timing of the injury could not be worse. If it was not days before the start of the season, the Red Sox might have considered moving Daniel Bard back to the bullpen. That seems less likely of an option with the season about to get underway.

The surgery will mean an even harder task for the Red Sox this season with the dominant New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays in line to battle the Red Sox all season within the division. The uprising of the Toronto Blue Jays makes the division even more challenging.

The Red Sox will need to hope for a speedy recovery from Bailey, but for now, Mark Melancon and Alfredo Aceves seem to be the men in line to take over the role as closer for Boston.