I'm back on the field after missing a month with a fractured left thumb. Needless to say, it feels very good to be back and be part of the team. I'm looking forward to doing my part during these final months of the season.

I feel pretty good in terms of what I need to do behind the plate and what I have to do at the plate as a hitter. I came back Monday night, and it was fun. The key is to simply look forward and to play the game, my game, to the best of my abilities.

This wasn't the first time I've had an injury. I've played with a broken toe before, but this injury was painful. To get hit like that on your thumb by a foul ball is definitely not fun. The best way to describe how it feels is that it is like a sharp pain.

The injury cost me a month of the season, but it could have been worse. I could have needed surgery.

When I first got hit, I thought I would be back out there right away. There was a lot of swelling at the beginning, but I didn't know the thumb was broken right away. Missing the month was just the way things unfolded.

Now I want to help the team reach its goals. Obviously, everybody here wants us to be doing better as a group than where we are in terms of wins and losses. This is baseball, though, and you just don't know what is going to happen.

We just need to be concerned with ourselves and preparing to win every day. It's about our club going out there and playing our game. It really is about taking it day by day.

The fact we have a lot of veteran players here -- a lot of guys who have the experience of being to the playoffs before -- will help as we do go down the stretch. Everybody in here knows what it takes to win.

All-Star catcher Victor Martinez missed 28 days due to a thumb injury he suffered on June 28 at San Francisco. At the time of the injury, Boston was in second place, two games out of first in the AL East. The Red Sox went 9-13 during the 22 games Martinez was out of the lineup and dropped to third place.