Boston Red Sox center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury will have further tests to determine the severity of his foot injury, reports ESPN Boston's Gordon Edes. Ellsbury initially sustained the injury when he fouled a ball off of his right foot on Aug. 28, and further aggravated it while stealing a base on Thursday. It is unclear how much time Ellsbury will miss, but manager John Farrell hinted at an extended absence by stating that he doesn't think it is simply a day-to-day malady. The injury is similar to the one that limited teammate Dustin Pedroia to 75 games in 2010.
Losing Ellsbury would be a major blow to the AL East-leading Red Sox on both sides of the ball. The speedster is batting .299/.355/.424 with eight home runs, eight triples and an MLB-leading 52 stolen bases in 56 attempts (93 percent success rate). In addition to the spark he provides on offense, Ellsbury has also played fantastic defense in center field -- he's rated extremely well by virtually every defensive metric available, and has made only three errors all season. Thanks to the total package of offense, defense, and baserunning, Ellsbury ranks ninth among all AL position player in Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball-Reference.
Injuries have been an issue for Ellsbury throughout his career. He was limited to 18 games in 2010 after fracturing several ribs in a collision with then-teammate Adrian Beltre, and played only 74 games last season due to a subluxation in his shoulder which he sustained while trying to break up a double play. Right fielder Shane Victorino (.352 OBP, 20 stolen bases) has taken Ellsbury's place at the top of Boston's lineup, and 23-year-old rookie Jackie Bradley Jr., was recalled and drew the start in center field on Saturday. Bradley is hitting only .161/.268/.306 in 71 major league plate appearances this year, but posted an 842 OPS in 80 games for Triple-A Pawtucket.