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Jason Varitek's Future

The injury bug has bitten the Boston Red Sox. First it was Trot Nixon. Then it was Jason Varitek. Both injuries have sent their respective injure to the disabled list, but I'm a little bit more worried about Varitek.

Varitek will have arthroscopic surgery on his knee Thursday, setting him back at least a month, but more likely in the six-to-eight week range. But since his job requires a lot of strain on his knees, a return this year may be wishful thinking.

It makes me think about the future. Will Varitek ever be the same catcher? Will the surgery fully heal the knee? Will Varitek be pain-free when he squats for nine innings a game?

If the answer is `no' to any of those questions, the Sox may need to think about switching Varitek to first base.

We've seen the transition many times: Mike Piazza, Mike Stanley and Javy Lopez coming to mind. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. But in Varitek's case, it'd be definitely worth it to have The Captain in the every day lineup if he can't squat behind the plate on a daily basis.

If Varitek were to be the Sox's every day first baseman, the Red Sox could move Kevin Youkilis back to third base. The defense may suffer at first, but there's no way to tell now how Varitek would handle the position. Mike Lowell, obviously, may be the odd-man out in this situation.

Maybe I'm jumping to conclusions. In the best situation possible, Varitek would be healthy as a horse and better than ever behind the plate. I wish that will be the case, but it very well might not be. Personally, I think the Sox are trying to be optimistic by saying Varitek will be back in six weeks.

If that's so, the Red Sox will make a push for the playoffs. But if Varitek is gone for the season, we may be on the outside looking in come October.