Red Sox ace left-hander Chris Sale is dealing with soreness in his left elbow, according to interim manager Ron Roenicke.
Per Roenicke, Sale first experienced the soreness on Monday, one day after facing live hitters for the first time since last August. He has since been sent for an MRI and the Red Sox are awaiting the results from Dr. James Andrews.
Sale, who turns 31 later this month, was already expected to begin the 2020 season on the injured list due to an earlier bout with pneumonia that would have delayed his spring preparations, but this recent news adds another layer of concern.
In that live batting practice session on a Fenway South backfield on Sunday, Sale threw 15 pitches while utilizing his entire pitch mix, and did not feel any pain in his arm upon the session’s completion.
Heading into what is now the first year of the five-year, $145 million extension he signed with Boston last March, Sale’s left elbow has received plenty of attention over the past 12 months.
The Florida native was shut down by the Sox due to inflammation in that same elbow last August, and he received a platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection from Dr. Andrews later that same month.
He was eventually cleared to resume throwing right around Thanksgiving, though, and up until Tuesday morning, any developments related to his left arm seemed to be positive and encouraging.
With the results of the MRI yet to be revealed, it’s unclear on where things will go from here. Worst-case scenario is most likely season-ending surgery, but we really don’t know anything yet.
What we do know is that a Red Sox starting rotation that already faced plenty of skepticism will face even more if Sale is indeed sidelined for an even longer period of time than initially anticipated.