Nerve-root injection sidelines Scutaro

Nerve-root injection sidelines Scutaro

BOSTON -- Shortstop Marco Scutaro was out of the lineup for Tuesday's series opener against the Diamondbacks after receiving a nerve-root injection Monday to alleviate pain and irritation he's been experiencing because of a pinched nerve in his neck.

"I think everything went real well," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said of the procedure. "I think he really wanted to play tonight. Just talking to all the medical people, it sounded like if we could give him one more day to let everything work, he would be better off long-term. So that's what we'll do."

The shortstop wanted to play Tuesday, but said he would be back in the lineup Wednesday.

"My neck has been pretty [sore] in the morning, so I'm kind of used to that," Scutaro said. "But I wasn't used to doing things [without] strength in my arm. I guess the inflammation's going to go down and everything's going to start working normal. That's what I'm thinking."

Scutaro said the problem had sapped him of strength in his left arm.

"He's been really good about not complaining about it, so if it's been bothering him, which I don't doubt, he hasn't said much," said Francona. "He really likes to play. I think he's afraid if he says something to us, we won't play him. He's been doing a good job with the medical people keeping it under control. But I think we kind of pointed to this day off to get it done. When you start talking about irritating nerves and things like that, then all of a sudden you're hurting the strength. You can't get stronger. You start getting worn down, and muscles atrophy and things like that. That's really not what we're shooting for. This game's hard enough."

Bill Hall played shortstop and batted seventh, while left fielder Daniel Nava, who hit a grand slam in his first big league at-bat Saturday, served as the leadoff man.

Maureen Mullen is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.