Red Sox ace laid up, 'very sick'

Updated: August 21, 2003, 6:46 PM ET
Associated Press

BOSTON -- Red Sox ace Pedro Martinez missed his scheduled start Thursday against the Oakland Athletics because of a sore throat and fever.

Martinez went to St. Elizabeth's Medical Center for testing, Red Sox spokesman Kevin Shea said. He was diagnosed with severe pharyngitis -- inflammation of the throat -- and given medication for both the fever and the sore throat, Shea said. Martinez was home resting by late afternoon.

The team was awaiting further test results from team physician Dr. Bill Morgan. It was not immediately clear when Martinez will be available to pitch again.

"We're waiting on the final word to see exactly what it is, but he was very sick last night, he slept none,'' manager Grady Little said.

Casey Fossum started for the Red Sox on Thursday against Oakland.

"It's a good chance for Casey Fossum to step up tonight and make a name and throw a great game in a big situation,'' first baseman Kevin Millar said before the game.

Center fielder Johnny Damon said Martinez's teammates are just hoping he gets better soon.

"We're able to win games without Pedro,'' he said. "Hopefully it's nothing that lingers and causes him to get very weak. You know, we'll survive.''


Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press