It's not just injuries at the major-league level that effect the Red Sox, but the minors, as well. Brandon Jacobs, a prospect that few agree on except for to say that he has potential, is one such player bothered by injury. He missed time earlier this season thanks to a problem with the hamate bone in his left hand, and it's possible that, after the regular season is over, Jacobs will undergo surgery to remove the bone altogether.
The 21-year-old has seen his power levels decrease this year, in part because of the promotion to High-A Salem, but also thanks to the hamate injury. He's wearing extra padding on that hand to protect the area. It's not just something that you go and have a casual surgery for -- if everything heals on its own, a procedure can be avoided. But if it doesn't fix itself, then the bone can be removed, and Jacobs would easily be back in time for the 2013 campaign.
Letting him continue to play allows him to get his reps in, rather than missing time, and there's no worry about causing further damage to his hand or wrist by continuing to play. As Jon Meoli notes at Sox Prospects, Ryan Kalish and Jed Lowrie both dealt with hamate issues more severe than what Jacobs has, as Kalish was thrown off of his game for nearly two years, while Jed Lowrie essentially lost a season of development to his. The fact Jacobs is still playing, and hasn't been awful, is a good sign in and of itself.