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Schilling could be done, but Sox are optimistic

Page 2 of 2 -- "If this was midseason and we had a few months to play with, he would have been placed in a cast and potentially undergone surgery," Morgan said.

Schilling had pitched well after sustaining the injury, first diagnosed as tendinitis, on Sept. 21 against Baltimore. In that game, a 3-2 Red Sox win, he struck out 14 and allowed three hits and one walk in eight shutout innings.

Five days later in an 11-4 victory over the Yankees, he gave up two runs and one hit in seven innings. And in the opener of the AL division series in Anaheim, he allowed two earned runs and nine hits in 6 2-3 innings.

Schilling appeared to aggravate the injury in the seventh inning against the Angels when he fielded Garret Anderson's grounder, threw wildly to first and grabbed his right ankle. He faced just one more batter in that 9-3 victory.

Schilling wears a removable boot when he's not in uniform.

"I think Schill has been shooting for last night's game since last Thanksgiving when Theo and those guys went out and signed him," Francona said. "He was waiting to pitch that game and he could not pitch that game the way he's able to physically. I'm sure that was very discouraging."

Francona declined to confirm that Lowe would start if Schilling can't, but said, "I have no doubt that we would have the ability to adjust."

And Lowe, one of the best closers in baseball before becoming a starter, is eager to pitch more than he has.

"I'm proud of what I've done the last four years. I've won games. I've pitched in All-Star games. To get relegated to this role is frustrating because you feel like you can help out," he said. "It's all speculation right now. I know they're going to do everything they can to get him out there. I hope he does get back out there. You don't want to get it by default. What kills me about the whole thing is not being able to contribute."

Yankees manager Joe Torre expects Schilling will pitch again in the series.

"He's not counting himself out," Torre said. "He's too much of a competitor." 

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