Jon Lester Confident Injury Won’t Become Long-Term Issue, Terry Francona Says Lefty Will Be Examined ‘Extensively’


Jul 5, 2011

Jon Lester is confident that a strained left lat suffered Tuesday night at Fenway Park will not become a long-term issue.

Lester left his start against the Toronto Blue Jays after four hitless innings. He told the staff after the fourth that he felt cramping in the entire muscle, which sits below the shoulder on the back and side, and did not fight to stay in the game.

The lefty said he has never had this injury before, but feels it will be rather easy to overcome.

"It's not something I'm worried about long term," said Lester, who struck out five in his four frames. "I should be fine."

Manager Terry Francona said that Lester will be examined "extensively" on Wednesday, at which point the team can plot a course of action.

Lester is scheduled to make just one more start before the All-Star break on Sunday afternoon against Baltimore. If he misses that outing, he could use the break itself to get a few extra days of rest and return following the intermission without going on the disabled list.

If the club decides to put him on the DL, he would be eligible to return for the opener of a seven-game homestand on July 22, which would be the equivalent of missing one start and having another pushed back a couple of days.

Much of this will be determined by the results of tests on Wednesday.

Matt Albers, who took over for Lester in the fifth, had the same injury earlier in the year and was able to return from the DL on time. 

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