BOSTON -- The Red Sox have placed slugger Hanley Ramirez on the 15-day disabled list, mainly to avoid any temptation from the club or the player to rush back from a right shoulder injury that has kept him out of action for the last week.
The move was made retroactive to Aug. 27, meaning Ramirez could play again on Friday, when the Red Sox open a nine-game road trip. However, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski made it clear Ramirez will be out longer than that. The Red Sox didn't have to put Ramirez on the DL because rosters were expanded at the beginning of the month.
"Well, just, if anything, to kind of protect ourselves from one another," Dombrowski said. "He can't play, so it's a situation where he's not going to be ready within the 15 days. It's going to be a situation where he's going to need to work on strengthening and they're giving him some treatment. More just a situation to say he's not going to be active and playing."
Ramirez is confident he will play again this season, and will debut at his new position (first base) once he does.
"Definitely," Ramirez said. "Yeah, you're going to see me at first base before the season is over. Don't worry about that."
Even while he recovers from his injury, Ramirez continues to take ground balls on a daily basis from infield instructor Brian Butterfield.
"He's felt comfortable over there," Dombrowski said. "I haven't seen him other than on the video, doing a little bit. He says that he's felt more comfortable over there than he's ever felt in the outfield. He thinks he'll be able to do it. I think [interim manager Torey Lovullo] even commented, he's a natural infielder. Sure, you'd love to see it at some time. You can't rush it. You've got to make sure he's healthy."
Ramirez, 31, is batting .249 with 19 homers in his first year with the Red Sox. However, since the All-Star break, he is batting .183 with no homers and seven RBIs.
Is his shoulder starting to feel better?
"Yeah, a little bit," Ramirez said. "I've been taking some anti-inflammatories, and that obviously makes it feel better slightly. I'll try to get it stronger and I can't wait to be back on the field."
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.