BY PAUL KENYON
BOSTON -- The Red Sox offseason got started yesterday when Mike Lowell had successful surgery to repair his injured right hip.
"He had surgery this morning. It went well. It was successful,'' general manger Theo Epstein reported at an afternoon press conference at Fenway. "They removed two bony lesions and some tiny portions of the labrum in his hip. They said they were pleasantly surprised with the state of the labrum where they went in there, that it was a complete success. He will start his recovery tomorrow.
The third baseman is expected to be fully recovered for next season.
"Recovery is three to four months. It could be less, it shouldn't be more,'' Epstein said. ``He should be ready to go at the beginning of spring training or shortly after.''
Doctors have told the Sox that there should be no lingering effects and that Lowell should be able to work full time next season.
"Today was a big day for that. They finally got a look in there. They didn't see anything they didn't expect,'' Epstein said. "They were actually a little pleasantly surprised. . . We expect Mike to contribute right from the start.''
Epstein also confirmed what David Ortiz had said after the game seven loss to Tampa Bay Sunday night. That is, that Ortiz will not need surgery on his injured wrist. Doctors have told the Red Sox that the offseason rest should have Ortiz back at full strength.
"He's 32 years old,'' Epstein said. "We see no reason he can't be one of the most dominant batters in baseball.''
The wild playoff schedule did claim one victim. Manager Terry Francona was ill and not able to attend team meetings today. Hopefully, those meetings will begin tomorrow Epstein said.