CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Philadelphia Phillies closer Brad Lidge will likely start the 2011 season on the disabled list because of pain behind his right shoulder.
Lidge, who was bothered by biceps tendinitis earlier this month, left Thursday's spring training outing against Minnesota because of the latest issue. He retired the first two batters of the inning on strikes, then yielded a homer and a single before issuing two walks.
According to the team's website, the oft-injured right-hander is expected to undergo an MRI exam when the team returns to Philadelphia next week.
Lidge, who had not appeared in a spring training game in nearly two weeks before Thursday, will start a season on the disabled list for the third time in the last four years.
Elbow problems caused Lidge to miss the start of the 2010 campaign and he went on to convert 27-of-32 save chances with a record of 1-1 and a 2.96 earned run average in 50 games.
Lidge was dominant in his first season with the Phillies, converting each of his 41 save opportunities during the 2008 regular season and all seven during the postseason as Philadelphia captured the World Series title. He struggled in 2009 with a mark of 0-8 and 31 saves in 42 chances with a lofty 7.21 ERA.