A shoulder injury slowed Steven Wright's progression through spring training in 2017, and he made just five starts for the Red Sox before a knee injury in May led to season-ending surgery. Of the starts he made, only one qualified as a quality start, and he was extremely prone to the long ball, allowing nine homers in 24 innings before the injury. Wright turned 33 in August, and in December, he was arrested on domestic assault charges. It's unclear if MLB will hand down a suspension for the incident. Regardless of any disciplinary action that may impact his availability to begin the season, Wright will need to prove that he's healthy and regain the form he showed in 2016 when he took the ball for 24 starts and racked up an impressive 3.33 ERA for the Red Sox, but he has a path to serve as a temporary rotation member again since Eduardo Rodriguez will begin the season on the DL and the health of David Price is in question after he logged just 74.2 innings last season.
Wright (knee) was suspended 15 games for a violation of the league's domestic violence policy, Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston reports. Wright was already questionable to start the season while recovering from knee surgery. Any time spent on the disabled list will not count towards his suspension, so this will delay the beginning of his 2018 campaign even further.
Wright (knee) pitched four innings in a minor-league game Thursday, Chad Jennings and Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald report. Wright got roughed up in the outing, giving up five runs, six hits and four walks, but results weren't as important as his workload. The Red Sox will evaluate Wright on Friday and haven't ruled him out for the start of the regular season.
Manager Alex Cora said that Wright (knee) has a "50/50 chance" to break camp in the starting rotation for an April 1 start against Tampa Bay, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. Wright recently tossed a three-inning live batting practice session this past weekend and is expected to test out the knee in a minor-league game in the coming days. There should be a little more clarity on the situation once he gets back on the mound for a live game. In the event that Wright is unable to make the start against the Rays, expect Hector Velazquez to take his place.
Wright (knee) thinks he could break camp in the big-league rotation if he continues on his current track, Alex Speier of the Boston Globe reports. He threw a three-inning live batting practice session Saturday and said he felt a dramatic improvement compared to his previous session just a few days earlier. Manager Alex Cora thinks the next step will be a minor-league game. He will need to avoid any setbacks if he is indeed going to be ready to go for an April 2 start in Miami (the fifth starter's spot).
Wright (knee) will throw three innings of live batting practice Saturday, Ian Browne of MLB.com reports. Wright is one of three Boston starters expected to open the season on the disabled list. Even when he's healthy enough to return, Wright's not guaranteed a spot in the rotation. When healthy, two of a group consisting of Wright, Eduardo Rodriguez (knee) and Drew Pomeranz (forearm) will take up the final two spots in the rotation.