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Originally published Sunday, September 8, 2013 at 8:41 PM

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Boston’s Ellsbury has broken foot

Jacoby Ellsbury is a big reason the Boston Red Sox are closing in on a playoff trip. Now, they can only hope he’ll be back in time to join them.

The Associated Press

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NEW YORK — Jacoby Ellsbury is a big reason the Boston Red Sox are closing in on a playoff trip. Now, they can only hope he’ll be back in time to join them.

The center fielder has a broken right foot, leaving the AL East leaders without a key offensive catalyst as they try to wrap up the division title.

Red Sox manager John Farrell said the team believes Ellsbury will be back this year, and hopes it will be during the regular season. But there is no specific timetable for his return, and the speedy leadoff hitter will keep wearing a protective boot on his injured foot for five days.

“After that, we’ll see how he responds to treatment and how he’s feeling,” Farrell said after Sunday’s 4-3 loss to the New York Yankees.

Ellsbury had an MRI on Saturday and returned to Boston for further examination. Then he went to Colorado to get a second opinion from foot specialist Dr. Thomas Clanton. Farrell said tests confirmed the diagnosis of a compression fracture, which means it’s non-displaced.

Ellsbury leads the majors with 52 stolen bases in 56 attempts. He has scored a team-high 89 runs and is batting .299 with eight homers and 52 runs batted in.

There was some good news for Boston, which has the best record in the majors and a 7½-game lead in the AL East: Clay Buchholz is ready to rejoin the rotation after missing three months with a strained neck.

Notes

• New York Mets pitcher Matt Harvey will have his sore right elbow examined by Dr. James Andrews to help determine if the 24-year-old ace needs reconstruction surgery.

• Former Mariner Wladimir Balentien hit his 53rd home run of the season for Yakult to move within two of Japanese baseball’s season record.

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