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Red Sox first baseman was removed Team USA’s World Baseball Classic roster with a sprained left ankle he suffered “three or four days ago.” The gritty Youkilis played through the pain until manager Davey Johnson noticed he was hurt during USA’s 6-5 win over Puerto Rico on Tuesday.
“He wasn’t going to miss last night’s game for the world,” Johnson said. “We’ve been devastated by some key injuries.”
USA teammate Brad Ziegler told ESPN.com’s Amy K. Nelson that Youkilis was in so much pain after the game that he could barely walk through the locker room.
In the meantime, Adam Dunn will replace Youk at first base for Team USA.
Reaction: OK, that’s it. The World Baseball Classic has got to be played at a different time of year, or not at all. These players aren’t conditioned to be playing October baseball in March. It just doesn’t work! Sprained ankles can heal during a season, luckily, but trainers will have to convince Youkilis to stay off it for a few weeks.
Now, our two most consistent and durable players in the lineup are both injured. Are they replaceable if this lasts until the regular season? Well, if you count Brad Wilkerson and Nick Green, then we’re all set! Ugh.