The Red Sox have suffered some costly injuries this season. Over the weekend, second baseman Dustin Pedroia, pitcher Clay Buchholz and catcher Victor Martinez joined the current slew of Sox players who are sidelined. While the amount of time these players will sit still is in question, their efforts surely will be missed no matter how long they are out. Although the Red Sox still have lots of baseball to be played, the injured players’ absences could hurt the team in pursuing a playoff spot come September.
Below are other Boston athletes that also have experienced costly injuries and hurt their teams’ chances of reaching the playoffs or competing for a title.
Marc Savard – This past March, the Bruins were continuing their quest for a playoff spot when all of a sudden they lost one of their key players following an aggressive hit from Penguins forward Matt Cooke. Cooke’s blindside hit flattened Savard and resulted in the Bruins’ training staff carting the center off the ice. His concussion was so severe no one expected he would return for the remainder of the season, but Savard did return when the Bruins faced the Flyers in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. After taking a 3-0 series lead, the Bruins would eventually lose the series in a heartbreaking Game 7.
Wes Welker – In Week 17 of the 2009 NFL season, Welker tore his ACL and MCL in the first quarter of a game against the Texans in Houston. He still finished the season with 123 receptions, a league-best total. He would miss the remaining three quarters of the Patriots regular-season finale as well as the wild card game against the Ravens, which resulted in a Patriots loss.
Kevin Garnett –After landing awkwardly in the second quarter of a February 2009 game against the Jazz, Garnett hobbled off the court and into the locker room for X-rays. Garnett would be diagnosed with a strained right knee and would not return until the following season. While he was out, he was a verbal presence on the bench, but the Celtics would not be the same without the “Big Ticket” and ended their season with a loss to the Magic in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Rodney Harrison – During a marquee Monday night game in October 2008, the Patriots safety injured his right knee while attempting to tackle Broncos quarterback Jay Cutler. Harrison remained on the Gillette Stadium grass waiting for a cart to come to his rescue. Waiving goodbye to the supportive fans while being chauffeured into the locker room, Harrison would never play another down of football again.
Tom Brady: In Week 1 of the 2008 season, Patriots fans turned their attention to Brady, who was knocked to the ground in an aggressive manner by Kansas City Chiefs safety Bernard Pollard. Rolling around on the grassy turf, Brady would be helped off the field and taken to get X-rays. The news broke the following day that he was officially done for the season, which allowed for backup quarterback Matt Cassel to attempt to lead the Patriots to another successful season. The Patriots were eliminated from the playoffs in Week 17, following their victory in Buffalo.
Patrice Bergeron: Experiencing an awful hit from behind by Philadelphia Flyers defensemen Randy Jones in October 2007, Bergeron laid completely still on the Bruins ice. Bergeron suffered a broken nose and concussion, but return for 64 games in 2008. As for the Bruins, they ended their season in heartbreaking fashion, losing 4-3 to Montreal in Round 1 of the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Curt Schilling: Beginning the 2005 season on the disabled list, Schilling would return to the Sox as a bullpen pitcher in late July. Schilling struggled immensely but would work his way back into a starting role. Schilling finished the season with an overall record of 8-8 and nine saves. The Red Sox would make it to the postseason but eventually be swept in the American League Divisional Series by the Chicago White Sox.
Drew Bledsoe: Following a terrifying hit in Week 2 of the 2001 NFL season by New York Jets linebacker Mo Lewis, Bledsoe suffered serious internal bleeding that sidelined him and paved the way for a future New England legend, Tom Brady. The Patriots would turn around their 1-3 start and finish 11-5, as well as capture their first Super Bowl championship in franchise history.
Tony Conigliaro: On a warm August night in 1967, California Angels pitcher Jack Hamilton beaned Conigliaro on his left cheekbone. The end result was a linear fracture on his cheek, a dislocated jaw and serious damage to his retina. Boston would eventually make it to the 1967 World Series but lose in seven games to the Cardinals.
Teddy Green: Coming off a successful season with the black and gold, Green was involved in a notorious stick-swinging incident with Blues forward Wayne Maki in a 1969 exhibition game. Green was severely hurt by Maki, who struck him on the head. Green endured a fractured skull and brain damage, which sidelined him for the entire season. In his absence, the Bruins won their fourth Stanley Cup. Green never played a single second of that particular season but had his named engraved on the trophy. He would return to the lineup the following season and then help the Bruins win the 1972 Stanley Cup.