Breaking News: Boston Red Sox John Lackey Will Undergo Tommy John Surgery

William PenfieldCorrespondent IIOctober 25, 2011

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 25: John Lackey #41 of the Boston Red Sox throws a pitch during the bottom of the first inning against the New York Yankees on September 25, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)
Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images

In the press conference to introduce Ben Cherington as general manager of the Boston Red Sox, he dropped a bomb by saying John Lackey will undergo Tommy John surgery. 

Lackey is not expected to return to the Red Sox until 2013 at the earliest.

Needless to say, this explains why Lackey recorded the worst season ever by a starting pitcher in 2011.

Lackey's 2011 line included a 12-12 record and an ERA of 6.41.

He was the subject of much controversy in 2011 despite his horrible season.

Time after time, Lackey would show up his teammates after they made an error. He also scoffed at Terry Francona multiple times when he was being taken out of the game. 

In June, the team shot down a report by Peter Gammons that Lackey may need Tommy John.

Lackey, himself, also denied that he would need surgery after being asked multiple times by the media after a game in June.

"You guys are brutal," he said. "No. There hasn't been [any talk of surgery]."

He will be the third member of the 2011 Red Sox to undergo the surgery, joining Dasiuke Matsuzaka and Rich Hill.

The loss of Lackey may be a welcome one to Red Sox Nation but it leaves a hole in the starting rotation that Cherington will have to address. As of now, the only guys who you expect to be in the rotation on Opening Day are Josh Beckett, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz.

It will be interesting to see where the Sox go from here in terms of starting pitching.