Hand specialist Dr. Thomas Graham, the same physician who performed season-ending thumb surgery on first baseman Kevin Youkilis, will examine Saltalamacchia in Cleveland early next week. Saltalamachhia said he doesn't know yet if he'll need surgery.
"It'll be decided when we get there and what [the doctor] thinks," Saltalamacchia said. "Nobody wants to make a decision right now until we figure everything out. There is definitely some damage in there, but nothing threatening. It's just one of those things where we just got to see how far it is.
"Regardless of which way it goes, that's the reason they're shutting me down," added Saltalamachhia, "because this is the best way to have a normal offseason," he said. "I'll work with [Gary] Tuck and be ready for spring training."
Boston acquired Saltalamacchia from the Texas Rangers on July 31 and he's played only 12 games for the Red Sox, posting a .167 average in 24 at-bats.
"I did it originally in [Triple-A] Oklahoma City, but like anyone else in here, you would have kept on playing," said Saltalamacchia, who was playing for Oklahoma City in July. "Actually, playing through it kind of got some scar tissue that helped it heal a little bit. It's been giving me some fits, but I wanted to finish the season and finish it strong. I felt like the smart decision was to shut it down and see where we're at."
CSNNE.com first reported the story.
Joe McDonald covers the Red Sox for ESPNBoston.com.