- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 18, 2010

BOSTON (AP) - Red Sox center fielder Mike Cameron will have season-ending surgery to repair a torn abdominal muscle.

Manager Terry Francona says he doesn’t know the exact date of the surgery, but it’s necessary to get the 37-year-old outfielder on pace to return next spring.

Cameron was placed on the disabled list for the second time this season on August 2. He missed 34 games early in the season due to the injury.

Cameron has tried to play through the injury since early in the season. Limited to just 48 games, he hit .259 with four homers with 15 RBIs.

“I put it off a long time,” he said. “It’s time to explore the options of taking care of what I need to do to be ready to play baseball next year. It’s time. It’s just time.”

The Red Sox signed the outfielder to $15.5-million, two-year contract during the offseason, with plans of upgrading their defense with him. Jacoby Ellsbury was moved to left prior to the start of the season.

Cameron and his agent met with general manager Theo Epstein and Francona to discuss the situation after Tuesday night’s game.

“Going further is going to bite into a chunk of next year,” Francona said.

Ellsbury, the team’s other center fielder at the start of the season, has a broken rib and may also be done for the year after being placed on the DL for the third time this season.

“It’s a broken rib in the back,” Ellsbury said of his exam by Dr. Lewis Yocum in California on Monday. “When I come back I’ll be stronger than ever.”

Francona said “I don’t know if it’s realistic” if he’ll return and the timetable was four to six weeks for it to heal.

Francona made his remarks before Boston hosted the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday night.