Phillies send Gordon home to have shoulder examined

ATLANTA -- Phillies closer Tom Gordon is returning to Philadelphia to get checked out after feeling pain in his right shoulder.

After a 4-3 loss to the Atlanta Braves on Wednesday night, manager Charlie Manuel said the team would be without its closer for the next stop on its trip.

Gordon, who had blown 3-of-8 save chances, was to head back to Philadelphia on Thursday to get examined by Dr. Michael Ciccotti, the team's medical director.

The 39-year-old right-hander has given up 12 hits in 9 1/3 innings with an ERA of 4.82, though he did pick up a save in his lone appearance against the Braves on Tuesday.

"He has some discomfort in his shoulder," Manuel said. "We won't know more until they check him out."

Manuel had not decided who would take over as closer when the team gets to San Francisco. Former starter Brett Myers could fill the role. Geoff Geary and Antonio Alfonseca also might be candidates.

"We'll figure that out on the 5-hour plane trip," Manuel said.