BOSTON — Pablo Sandoval’s next game in a Red Sox uniform won’t be until next spring at the earliest, but the third baseman was a happy man Monday as he addressed the media for the first time since undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery last week.
“(Dr. James Andrews) did a great job,” a smiling Sandoval said as his Boston teammates prepared to begin a three-game series against the Oakland A’s. “I feel OK now. It’s been almost a week since the surgery, so I feel great. I feel fantastic. Nothing bothering me at all.”
Sandoval also used his media availability to address speculation that he might have faked an injury after losing his starting job to Travis Shaw during spring training.
“I know in my mind what I have in there,” he said. “People said that I was faking. You (in the media) said that I was faking. I don’t fake at all, because I (have proven) that I can play through pain. So, I don’t have to prove it at all. I just now focus to do all my things out there. I got the surgery already, so now I’m going to focus on the rehab and get healthy (for) next year.”
He later added that he was “laughing” at those who doubted the legitimacy of his injury.
“He was dealing with a serious injury,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said. “I’m sure that there is some question about the whereabouts and how (the injury) came about, but the surgery obviously proves that there was something going on in there. We’re glad that the procedure’s been done to get it rectified, and now, there’s a lot of work to be done on the rehab side of it.”
Sandoval said he and the team have not yet decided whether he will rehab at the Red Sox’s facility in Fort Myers, Fla., or near his offseason home in Miami. He will remain in Boston for the time being, however, as he awaits the birth of his child.
“It’s hard (being sidelined),” said Sandoval, who added that he’s received numerous text messages from teammates wishing him well in his recovery. “I want to keep following (the team). I was getting surgery, and then next day I was watching the game. I follow my teammates everywhere — no matter where they are, I’m going to keep watching the game, rooting for them.”
Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports Images