Red Sox's Drew stays optimistic

The Baltimore Sun

Boston Red Sox right fielder J.D. Drew is not giving up on a return this season, despite a back injury that has sidelined him since last month.

"I'm confident, but I can't predict what's going to happen," Drew said. "I know what's going on. I've got a herniated disc that isn't any fun. We've got some capable players that can fill in and do a good job.

"My thing is not to go out there and be a hero and be stupid and really hurt pitching staffs by not tracking fly balls the way I'm capable of and hurt the team by not being able to swing the bat effectively," he said.

Drew was diagnosed with a herniated disc in his lower back last month in Toronto and hasn't played since.

The veteran was having his best season in Boston up to that point, with 19 home runs, 64 RBIs and a .280 batting average in 107 games.

"It's been there the whole time," he said. "It's just a matter of how bad it is exactly. We've treated and stretched and did everything we possibly can to get it better, but I'll turn around and have a bad day."

Tigers:: Reliever Joel Zumaya has a stress fracture in a bone at the front of his right shoulder and will be shut down from baseball activities for six to eight weeks. Zumaya had offseason right shoulder surgery and didn't join the team until June 20. He went back on the disabled list Aug. 13 because of a sore right shoulder and has appeared in only 21 games this season.

Nationals:: A minor league player in the organization has been charged with having sex with a 15-year-old girl. Double-A Harrisburg outfielder Garrett Guzman had sex with the girl in late July, police alleged in documents filed in district court Sept. 4. Guzman was charged with a misdemeanor count of corruption of minors. Guzman hasn't been arraigned, and court officials said the 25-year-old doesn't have a lawyer on record. Harrisburg general manager Randy Whitaker declined to comment. A message with the Nationals wasn't immediately returned.

Rockies:: Colorado activated first baseman Todd Helton from the 60-day DL. Helton was placed on the 15-day DL on July 3 because of a strained lower back. He was transferred to the 60-day DL on Aug. 10. Helton, who brought a .332 batting average into the season, was hitting just .266 with seven homers and 29 RBIs in 81 games. In his past 22 games leading up to July 3, he was hitting .182 (14-for-77).

Royals:: Outfielder Mitch Maier and third baseman Alex Gordon were activated from the 15-day DL. Maier was hit below the right eye Aug. 20 by a pitch from the Indians' Zach Jackson. Gordon suffered a torn right hip flexor Aug. 21 and was placed on the DL two days later. Maier was hitting .339 with four RBIs before the injury. Gordon was batting .254 with 14 homers and 51 RBIs.

Diamondbacks:: Arizona sent pitcher Micah Owings to the Reds to complete the August trade for slugger Adam Dunn. Owings did fine at the plate this season, hitting .288 with a home run, two doubles and three RBIs in 22 games with the Diamondbacks. But the 25-year-old struggled on the mound, going 6-9 with a 5.93 ERA and was sent down to Triple-A Tucson on July 29.

Pirates:: Starter Tom Gorzelanny will miss the rest of the season because of an injury to his left middle finger. Gorzelanny left his start against the Astros in the third inning Wednesday night with an irritation in his finger. The left-hander was examined yesterday, when it was determined that his season was finished. Gorzelanny went 6-9 with a 6.66 ERA in 21 starts. The 26-year-old, who led Pittsburgh with a 14-10 record in 2007, struggled throughout most of his season, which included a stint at Triple-A Indianapolis.

Reds:: Second baseman Brandon Phillips had two pins inserted into his broken right index finger and will be evaluated in four to six weeks. Phillips broke the finger on a bunt attempt in Tuesday's win at Milwaukee.

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