Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 2 Months

The Red Sox traded Middlebrooks to the Padres on Friday for catcher Ryan Hanigan, MLB.com reports.

After Middlebrooks hit .288/.325/.509 with 15 homers and 54 RBI in 75 games in 2012, there seemed to be little doubt that he was the future at third base for Boston. However, his luster has faded considerably since that time, as injuries and ineffectiveness have plagued him the past two years. Still, his pop alone may be enough to give him the inside track over Yangervis Solarte for the starting job at third base next season, but everything will hinge on the health of his hand come spring.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 3 Months

Middlebrooks (hand) said he's open to playing a new position, perhaps first base, WEEI.com reports. The third baseman's immediate future is unclear after Boston signed Pablo Sandoval to play third base.

It seems that Middlebrooks doesn't have a spot on Boston's roster in 2015 -- even if he transitioned to first base, Mike Napoli will block his playing time there. A trade to another organization is his best bet for major-league playing time, but he's still coming back from a hand injury. Things will remain unclear until spring training, when Middlebrooks' hand has completely healed and other organizations can get a good look at him.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks will not play winter-league baseball this offseason in order to rest his hand, WEEI's Alex Speier reports.

Missing out on more practice time is another cost of Middlebrooks' hand injury. Middlebrooks has a large host of talent breathing down his neck at third base for the future, with Xander Bogaerts and Brock Holt able to shift over to the hot corner and prized prospect Garin Cecchini making a strong debut in September.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks (hand) is out of Sunday's lineup against the Yankees, The Boston Globe's Pete Abraham reports.

It turns out Middlebrooks' right hand sprain will be season ending, as the soreness will force him to miss a sixth straight game. Garin Cecchini will continue to fill in for him at third,

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks (hand) is not in the lineup for Saturday's game against the Yankees.

Middlebrooks will miss his fifth straight game Saturday. The Red Sox were hopeful that he would be able to play again this season, but they probably will not force him into the lineup Sunday if he is still sore. Garin Cecchini will man the hot corner Saturday in Middlebrooks' place.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks (hand) remains out of the lineup Friday against the Yankees, Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe reports.

Middlebrooks is set to miss a fourth straight start due to right hand soreness, but the Red Sox remain hopeful that he will return to the lineup before the end of the season. The hand has presented issues on and off this season, but manager John Farrell suggested he doesn't think that Middlebrooks' struggles can be attributed solely to the injury. "I don't think he's been limited any different than any other players who deal with nagging ailments over the course of a full season," Farrell said.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks (hand) is out of the lineup Thursday versus the Rays, Alex Speier of WEEI.com reports.

Middlebrooks is dealing with a right hand sprain and will miss his third straight game. While the severity of the injury is unknown, the Sox certainly won't risk further damage with ultimately nothing to play for. Garin Cecchini again gets the nod at third base in Middlebrooks' place.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks (hand) is not in the starting lineup Wednesday against the Rays.

Middlebrooks was scratched from the lineup Tuesday with a right hand sprain, and will sit out at least another day. Garin Cecchini will start at third in his place.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks was scratched from Tuesday's lineup with a right hand sprain.

While it sounds like something that could limit Middlebrooks at least through the end of the Tampa series, the team lists him as just day-to-day. Garin Cecchini is starting at third base Tuesday and will likely remain there until Middlebrooks is cleared to return.

Will Middlebrooks 3B SD 5 Months

Middlebrooks has been scratched from the lineup for Tuesday's game against the Rays.

Both Middlebrooks and Xander Bogaerts were removed from the lineup, but whereas Bogaerts had a pre-existing neck injury, a reason for Middlebrooks' scratch is uncertain. Look for the team to elaborate before too long. Garin Cecchini starts at third base and bats seventh.