Red Sox ace Chris Sale’s MRI shows ‘some healing,’ Alex Cora says

Red Sox ace Chris Sale underwent an MRI on Thursday to evaluate how he is recovering from the stress fracture in his right rib cage. On Friday, Sox manager Alex Cora revealed that Sale’s MRI showed “some healing” when speaking with reporters (including MLB.com’s Ian Browne) at Charlotte Sports Park.

While there has been “some healing,” Cora also noted that there is still no timetable for when Sale could start throwing again. Rather than establishing a timetable, the next step will be to see how Sale feels symptom-wise in the coming days. From there, the Red Sox can then determine when exactly the veteran left-hander can get back on the mound.

Sale, who turned 33 on Wednesday, has been sidelined since suffering the rib injury while throwing at his alma mater, Florida Gulf Coast University, on February 24.

When speaking with reporters at the Fenway South complex on Tuesday, Sale indicated that he was in better spirits and was hopeful that he could begin his throwing program at some point next week.

“I think they want to get me past a certain point numbers-wise with weeks because with bones, it’s probably scheduled out,” Sale said. “I think they want to get me to a certain number before I start doing that just to really give it some time.”

Regardless of when Sale starts throwing again, the southpaw will still need a considerable amount of time to build back up before he is deemed ready to pitch at the major-league level.

With that, it might not be until May or later when Sale takes the mound for the Red Sox again. There are still plenty of hurdles he needs to clear before that can happen.

(Picture of Chris Sale: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox ace Chris Sale has stress fracture in right rib cage, will not be ready for start of 2022 season

Red Sox ace Chris Sale has a stress fracture in his right rib cage and will not be ready for the start of the season, chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom announced on Wednesday morning.

Sale sustained the injury while throwing a live batting practice at his alma mater — Florida Gulf Coast University — last month. The soon-to-be 33-year-old felt the effects in the following days before meeting with Dr. Patrick Joyner, who diagnosed the stress fracture.

“I was throwing a live session over at FCGU, it was a Thursday and after that felt a little side discomfort, nothing too crazy — I didn’t think anything of it,” Sale explained. “Over the next handful of days, not only did it stick around, it kind of got worse.”

The live bullpen session in question was live streamed on Instagram. Not by Sale, who does not have any social media accounts, but by Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes.

“Probably a lot of you saw the live BP that was streaming on Instagram,” said Bloom. “Obviously we were not in touch with him at that time (because of the MLB lockout). Talking to him, that’s when this happened. That’s actually the last time that he threw. We found about it when we were able to get back in touch with him.”

Sale joked that his injury was the “curse of social media,” noting that “I get on social media for the first time and look what happens.”

As soon as the lockout ended last Thursday, Sale alerted the Red Sox of the injury in his first phone conversations with Bloom and manager Alex Cora. His timetable as of now has yet to be determined, but he will not be ready for Opening Day.

“We’re talking weeks, not days before we can get a baseball back in his hand,” Bloom said of Sale. “Obviously everything he does is rotational. … He’s doing a lot better now than when he first came in. But we don’t know (a timetable). We just know he’s not going to be ready for the start of the season.”

Sale himself seems optimistic about his recovery. Although disappointed by the prospect of another setback as he approaches the two-year anniversary of his Tommy John surgery, the veteran lefty appears to be maintaining a positive outlook.

“I’ve never dealt with this, but I know bones take, what, six to eight weeks to heal,” he said. “That’s a pretty universally across-the-board timeline. I’m like a dog on a chain right now. I can’t wait to get off this thing. The last couple of years have sucked, and I’ve run into some pretty unlucky circumstances, but what can you do?”

(Picture of Chris Sale: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)