After suffering a slight tear of his ulnar collateral ligament in early March, Red Sox top pitching prospect Bryan Mata has recently restarted his throwing program, manager Alex Cora said earlier Sunday morning.
Mata, who experienced soreness behind his right triceps during the early stages of spring training, underwent an MRI last month that revealed a slight tear in his UCL.
At that time, the right-hander was to be shut down for at least three weeks as the Sox opted for rest and treatment as opposed to surgery.
Since then, Mata has apparently been progressing at a steady pace. On March 24, Red Sox pitching coach Dave Bush revealed that the young hurler would “get back into a throwing program before too long” to test out his elbow.
On April 4, Cora revealed that Mata had indeed restarted his throwing program.
“He started his throwing program towards the end [of camp],” Cora said Sunday. “I’m not sure where he’s at right now as far as [distance], but I know he started his throwing program when we left camp.”
Mata, who turns 22 in May, is currently regarded by Baseball America as the No.4 prospect in Boston’s farm system, ranking tops among pitchers in the organization.
The 6-foot-3, 227 pounder out of Venezuela was added to the Sox’ 40-man roster in November 2019. With no minor-league season in 2020, the righty spent his year developing at the club’s alternate training site — where his fastball reached 97 mph — and fall instructional league and was viewed as arguably the top starting rotation depth option the Red Sox had to offer at the minor-league level.
With this recent setback, though, it would seem to be in the Sox’ best interest to not rush Mata back and instead see how he responds to the throwing program he has recently started again before determining the next steps in this rehab process.
(Picture of Bryan Mata: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)