Red Sox manager Terry Francona said the ailment was minor. But since it was the same thumb McDonald had surgery on in October -- which he had felt some soreness in throughout last week -- Francona didn't take any chances.
"He took that one swing and his thumb just puffed up on him a little bit," Boston's skipper said. "He wanted to stay in, I just didn't want to undo a really good spring. [We'll] give him [Tuesday], we have the day off [Wednesday], he's fine."
The Red Sox host the Rays at 7:05 p.m. ET on Tuesday, then have a day off Wednesday.
McDonald, who started in left field and hit in the No. 7 spot, lined out to second base in his first at-bat in the top of the second inning, then caught a fly ball in the bottom half. For the third inning, Ryan Khoury subbed in at third base and took McDonald's place in the lineup, with Nate Spears moving to left field.
The 32-year-old McDonald entered Monday batting .250 (10-for-40) with two homers and four RBIs in 14 Grapefruit League games.
-- Alden Gonzalez
Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his columns and his blog, listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.