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Injury to push back Bosox ace Beckett

Josh Beckett strained an oblique muscle in a side session.

Josh Beckett strained an oblique muscle in a side session.

BOSTON — Josh Beckett's first start in the AL division series against the Angels was pushed back to Game 3 after the Red Sox ace injured his side during a bullpen session.

LHP Jon Lester will pitch the opener at Los Angeles on Wednesday night, followed by RHP Daisuke Matsuzaka on Friday night, manager Terry Francona said. Beckett is slated to start Sunday at Fenway Park.

Francona said Sunday that Beckett strained an oblique muscle on the 40th pitch of his normal side session Friday.

Beckett was 4-0 with a 1.20 ERA in the 2007 postseason, when the Red Sox won their second World Series title in four years. In 10 career postseason outings, he is 6-2 with a 1.73 ERA.

The right-hander was 12-10 with a 4.03 ERA this season, with two stints on the disabled list, from March 19 to April 6 (back spasms) and Aug. 18 to Sept. 5 (right elbow inflammation).

Before a doubleheader against the Yankees, the Red Sox retired Johnny Pesky's No. 6 in a rainy ceremony at Fenway Park.

Pesky, who turned 89 Saturday, wore No. 6 as an infielder with Boston, where he played eight seasons. He later was a coach and manager for the Red Sox and has been associated with the team for 57 years. His number was the sixth retired by the team.

The ceremony was rescheduled from Friday night when rain delayed the start of the game.

"I was hoping they'd skip it completely," Pesky joked. "I'm just so grateful. It's just so flattering."

JONES SECURES TITLE: Braves 3B Chipper Jones walked his only time up against the Astros and earned his first NL batting title, edging Cardinals 1B Albert Pujols. Jones finished with a career-high .364 average; Pujols went 1-for-2 to finish at .357. Jones' average was the highest for an NL champ since Barry Bonds won with a .370 in 2002. "It's a tremendous feather in the cap, from an individual standpoint," Jones said.

DODGERS LOSE KEY SETUP MAN: LH reliever Hong-Chih Kuo will not pitch in the NL division series as a precaution because of a possible condition with his circulation. Kuo, who has a 2.14 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 80 innings, couldn't feel his fingers while warming up Saturday then still had some numbness when he threw for about 15 minutes in the indoor cage.

PHILS TAB HAMELS: Phillies LHP Cole Hamels will pitch Game 1 of the NL division series when the East champions open Wednesday at home against the Brewers. Hamels went 14-10 with a 3.09 ERA this season and struck out 196 batters in 2211/3 innings. Manager Charlie Manuel said he was undecided about his Game 2 starter.

D'BACKS: 3B Mark Reynolds struck out twice to extend his major-league record to 204 for the season.

GIANTS: INF Kevin Frandsen, out all season recovering from a ruptured Achilles' tendon, made his season debut with a pinch-hit groundout in the eighth, receiving roars from the fans. Frandsen grew up in nearby San Jose and is a lifelong Giants fan.

MARLINS: SS Hanley Ramirez was out of the starting lineup with a stiff shoulder.

NATIONALS: The last-place team fired five coaches, a near-complete overhaul of manager Manny Acta's staff. Bench coach Pat Corrales, base coaches Tim Tolman and Jerry Morales, bullpen coach Rick Aponte and hitting coach Lenny Harris were all told they would not return. Only pitching coach Randy St. Claire kept his job.

TIGERS: SS Edgar Renteria left the game against the Rays after the fourth with a left chest muscle strain.

Injury to push back Bosox ace Beckett 09/28/08 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 3, 2010 2:05pm]
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