Reds starting pitcher Mat Latos had offseason elbow surgery and then knee surgery in the first week of spring training. He's now dealing with forearm pain -- which caused a rehab start to be scratched and a scheduled bullpen session to be cut short Friday. And now he's awaiting results of an MRI.
"Everything started out fine with his bullpen and then he threw a pitch that bothered the inside of his right elbow. We're smart enough to know that we needed to shut him down," Reds manager Bryan Price said (cincinnati.com). "They're doing some testing on him to see if there is anything beyond what we think is some swelling and tightness in the area. We're hoping that's all it is and we're optimistic that's it. But it does mean a step back in the rehab process and a delay in when we'll see him here in Cincinnati."
Sometimes pain or tightness in the forearm area can be a precursor to UCL problems, which leads to Tommy John surgery. Of course, please note the "sometimes" and "can" in the above sentence, because Latos' situation, at present, is far from that dire.
Even if Latos and the Reds get good news on the MRI -- which it sounds like they expect -- he's still going to have to wait until he's pain-free and then work his way back into game shape. As such, it's difficult to see him being ready to make a big-league start in April.
Latos, 26, was 14-7 with a 3.16 ERA (121 ERA+), 1.21 WHIP and 187 strikeouts in 210 2/3 innings last season.
With Latos out, Alfredo Simon is in the Reds' rotation. The club entered Saturday with a 3-7 record.