Lowell, still with Red Sox, has surgery on thumb

Mike Lowell is expected to be ready for spring training after

having surgery Wednesday on a thumb injury that derailed his trade

from the Boston Red Sox to the Texas Rangers.

The operation to repair a radial collateral ligament in his

right thumb that was torn late last season was done in Phoenix by

Dr. Donald Sheridan, the Red Sox said. The third baseman should

recover in six to eight weeks, putting him on track for Boston’s

first full spring training workout on Feb. 24.

The Red Sox had worked out a deal to send the 2007 World

Series MVP to the Rangers for catcher Max Ramirez. But it fell

apart after Lowell saw a hand specialist in Arizona on Dec. 18 and

Rangers team physician Dr. Keith Meister the next day. The Red Sox

are expected to revisit a trade once Lowell recovers.

Before last season, Lowell had surgery to repair a torn

labrum in his right hip and his range in the field was diminished.

But he batted .290 with 17 homers and 75 RBIs in 119 games. In

11-plus major league seasons, Lowell is batting .280 with 218

homers and 926 RBIs. He has made four All-Star teams.

He is owed $12 million in 2010, the final season of a $37.5

million, three-year contract, and the Red Sox had agreed to pay as

much as $9 million of it in the proposed trade with Texas.

Lowell came to the Red Sox before the 2006 season with Josh

Beckett in a trade that sent Hanley Ramirez to the Florida Marlins.

Lowell, considered a throw-in in that deal, hit .400 with a homer

and three doubles in the 2007 World Series, when the Red Sox swept

the Colorado Rockies for their second title in four seasons.