Wakefield to make 4th start of 2nd half

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A day after saying they were unsure when Tim Wakefield will make his next start, the Red Sox said Wednesday the 43-year-old knuckleballer will likely start on Tuesday against the Blue Jays.

Wakefield, who's suffering from a disc problem in his back that will need surgery once the season is over, is coming off a loss on Monday in which he allowed five runs, four earned, and walked seven in five rainy innings against the Royals.

Wakefield said after the game he still wanted to pitch this year.

"Absolutely," he said.

Tuesday will be Wakefield's fourth start since the All-Star break; overall, Wakefield is 11-4 with a 4.33 ERA this season in 20 starts.

"He said he felt pretty good [on Tuesday]," Francona said. "He may not make the start but I think he's going to be OK."

Francona said Wakefield will probably not throw another bullpen before Tuesday. Instead, he might throw on flat ground and as long as there are no setbacks, he'll start against Toronto.

Amy K. Nelson is a reporter for ESPN Boston.