Red Sox’ David Price set to make first rehab start on Sunday
The Boston Red Sox’ $217 million man could make his season debut by the end of the month.
David Price‘s long road to recovery is nearing its final stages.
As we learned a few days ago, the Red Sox had a tentative timeline for Price’s return following his simulated game on May 5. After going four innings in another simulation on May 9, the club has confirmed that the All-Star lefty will make a rehab start on Sunday, May 14 – first reported by the Boston Globe’s Pete Abraham.
The plan is for Price to start for the Triple-A Pawtucket Red Sox as they host the Rochester Red Wings at 1:35 pm. He’s expected to throw 70-75 pitches, depending on how many high-stress situations he finds himself in.
Price has missed the entirety of the 2017 season with a strained elbow but has pitched in three simulated games over the past few weeks.
Beyond his first rehab start, manager John Farrell is still expecting him to require multiple starts before he’s major league ready. He should make subsequent starts on May 19 and May 24, giving him a chance to return to the major leagues during the Red Sox series with the Chicago White Sox at the end of the month.
Before re-joining the big league club, Price will have to prove that he can handle a 95+ pitch workload without experience any hiccups. If he can, the Red Sox will add a valuable weapon to the top of their rotation.
Knuckleballer Steven Wright underwent successful left knee surgery Wednesday and will miss the remainder of the 2017 season, leaving a gaping hole at the back end of the Red Sox’ rotation. Kyle Kendrick is currently filling the position but gave up six runs over four innings in his first start. He last pitched in the major leagues during the 2015 season as a member of the Colorado Rockies.
After Price’s simulated performance Tuesday, John Farrell told MassLive’s Christopher Smith that he “had a good work day.”
"It’s good to see him at the point now where it’s the fine-tuning to execute pitches vs. always being a physical response to the workload. A good work day for him. Anticipate a light bullpen on Thursday as he has been doing. We’ll see where we go after that."
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Price compiled a 3.99 ERA in 230 innings last season, with an 8.92 K/9 and career-high 1.17 HR/9. Since the 2008 season, he’s thrown more innings than any other pitchers in baseball. There’s an argument to be made that the two-month delay to the start of his season could, in fact, be beneficial and keep him fresh for the duration of the year.