John Tomase of WEEI made a great point during Tuesday’s radio broadcast of the Red Sox-Nationals game at the Ballpark of Palm Beaches.
Discussing David Price, he said (something along the lines of) “Unique doesn’t mean OK,” referencing the somewhat ambiguous doctor’s evaluation late last week.
Increasingly, regardless of how the Price and his sore forearm progress, it’s appearing the left-hander will at least start the season on the disable list. It’s simple math — He’ll be reevaluated somewhere in the next four or five days, and only then, best case scenario, can he start to truly prepare for the season. At the least, he’ll miss a week of the regular season.
Eduardo Rodriguez has certainly made a case thus far (2-0, 3.60 ERA, 4K, 1.00 WHIP in 5 IP) to start the year in the rotation behind Rick Porcello (who almost has to be the Opening Day starter, doesn’t he? Do you not give the ball to the reigning Cy Young winner?), Chris Sale, Steven Wright and Drew Pomeranz.
That being said, we still haven’t seen Wright or Pomeranz.
Reports out of Red Sox camp are that both pitchers are progressing as expected and both should be ready for the season. Barring any setbacks.
But what if there are setbacks?
Let’s flip a coin and say one of them is ready in time. It would seem, based on usage and performance so far this spring, that Roenis Elias at least gets a look in the rotation to start the year.
He’s struck out five in five innings pitched with a 0.80 WHIP this spring. Remember, he only had 7 innings of exposure at the big league level last year (and they were woeful), but maybe he starts to put things together this year.
If both Wright and Pomeranz are for some reason unavailable to start the year, though, then what?
Porcello, Sale, Rodriguez, Elias and who? Henry Owens seems to have effectively disqualified himself already with a WHIP of 3.20.
Do they run Brian Johnson out there? He’s been OK, promising even, but he too carries some red flags (namely, a 2.36 WHIP and a 5.79 ERA …).
It would seem the best bet for now is to simply hope three or more of the anticipated five are healthy and ready to go, because everything else becomes a bit of a leap.
Here’s hoping “unique” really does turn out to mean “OK.”