Red Sox reliever Joely Rodriguez suffered a right side injury in the eighth inning of Saturday’s Grapefruit League game against the Orioles at JetBlue Park.
Rodriguez had allowed one run on two hits before facing Colton Cowser with one out in the eighth inning. On his fourth pitch to the Orioles center fielder (and 13th of the appearance), the left-hander threw a ball and immediately grabbed at his right side.
After receiving a visit from Red Sox manager Alex Cora and a team trainer, Rodriguez was immediately taken out of the game. According to Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe, the 31-year-old southpaw was “was groaning in pain as he went to the clubhouse and was holding onto his side.”
Following Boston’s 9-6 win over Baltimore, Cora indicated that Rodriguez — who was initially diagnosed with right torso pain — will undergo further testing to determine the severity of the injury.
“Sore,” Cora said, via MLB.com’s Ian Browne. “We’ll know more tomorrow how he comes back and probably do some imaging to see where we’re at. He’s in pain, in the right torso area.”
The Red Sox signed Rodriguez to a one-year, $2 million deal that comes with a $4.25 million club option for 2024 back in November. Coming into the year, the Dominican-born hurler was expected to be one of Boston’s primary left-handed relief options this season alongside Richard Bleier.
Saturday marked Rodriguez’s fourth appearance of the spring for the Red Sox. As noted by MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo, the club has taken things slowly with Rodriguez after he underwent offseason shoulder surgery. Prior to Saturday’s incident, Rodriguez was expected to be ready for Opening Day. It now appears as though he could start the season on the injured list.
If Rodriguez is sidelined to begin the year, the Red Sox could very well look to add another lefty reliever to pair with Bleier before the regular season begins. Internally, non-roster invitees like Matt Dermody, Ryan Sherriff, and Oddanier Mosqueda — who have all been reassigned to minor-league camp — represent a few possibilities.
On the 40-man roster, the Red Sox have a pair of intriguing lefties in Chris Murphy and Brandon Walter, though neither prospect has yet to pitch at the major-league level. They are both slated to begin the year in Triple-A Worcester’s starting rotation.
(Picture of Joely Rodriguez: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)