David Price has resumed playing catch, still likely to start regular season on DL

Last week the Red Sox received good news when tests revealed David Price does not have any structural damage in his prized left elbow. No structural damage bad enough to require surgery, at least.

Price has resumed playing catch in spring training, though Tuesday manager John Farrell confirmed his highest-paid player is likely to begin the season on the disabled list. There simply isn’t enough time for Price to get ready before Opening Day. From Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald:

“I think at this point, yeah, it’d be hard to see him ready to go at the start of the season,” Farrell said. “You know, we really won’t have any kind of idea until he gets on the mound the first time. And right now I don’t know when that’s gonna be.”

...

“Played catch again today as he’s been the last three days,” Farrell said. “And everyone’s gonna want to know, what’s the next step? What’s the next phase? I will tell you, this is gonna be dependent upon how David goes through the morning rehab and the exercises that he goes through, what he feels he’s capable of that day, within reason. We’re at a 60-foot phase right now, but we don’t have (instructions) that there needs to be X number of sessions at 60 feet and then we’re going to progress.

“It was at the doctor’s recommendation, do not put him on a structured throwing program. It may be either too quick or too slow, depending on how he feels. A lot of what’s driving this on a daily throwing schedule is how David feels.”

This isn’t surprising, of course. Once Price suffered the injury, it seemed likely he would start the season on the disabled list even if the tests brought good news, which they did. The Red Sox are looking at the big picture here. They’re going to take it slow with Price because missing a few starts in April is better than rushing him back and missing a lot of starts later in the year.

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David Price is likely to start the season on the disabled list. USATSI

Price’s injury all but assures Boston’s rotation will shake out like so come the start of the regular season:

  1. Chris Sale
  2. Rick Porcello
  3. Drew Pomeranz
  4. Eduardo Rodriguez
  5. Steven Wright

That won’t be the exact order, though those are the five names. Before Price’s injury, there were only two spots for Pomeranz, Rodriguez and Wright. Either Rodriguez was going to go to the minors or one of Pomeranz or Wright would wind up in the bullpen. (Both are out of minor-league options and would need to go through waivers to go to Triple-A, and neither would clear.)

For now, Price seems to be doing well as he works his way back from his elbow injury. The Red Sox will be cautious because they are very much a World Series contender, and they want Price at full strength for those important late-season games and the postseason.

CBS Sports Writer

Mike Axisa joined CBS Sports in 2013. He has been a member of the BBWAA since 2015 and has previously written about both fantasy baseball and real life baseball for MLBTradeRumors.com, FanGraphs.com, RotoAuthority.com,... Full Bio

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