Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that Francisco Liriano’s next start has been pushed back due to a sore throat.
Liriano, who threw a no-hitter against the White Sox on Tuesday, was originally scheduled to pitch against the Red Sox on Monday night. Nick Blackburn will now make the start in his place while Liriano will start Tuesday’s series opener against the Tigers.
Liriano threw a season-high 123 pitches in Tuesday’s no-hitter, so pushing him back in the starting rotation isn’t the worst idea, anyway. Keep in mind that he hadn’t exceeded 100 pitches in any of his previous five starts.
Pitcher David Phelps has a torn UCL and will undergo Tommy John surgery, ending his 2018 season, the Mariners announced on Wednesday. Phelps was making brief one-inning stints in the Cactus League as he worked his way back from a procedure to remove a bone spur from his elbow last September. He said he felt the ligament tear on his final pitch against the Angels in his March 17 appearance.
Phelps, 31, was expected to set up for closer Edwin Diaz. The right-hander, between the Marlins and Mariners last season, posted a 3.40 ERA with a 62/26 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. He and the Mariners avoided arbitration in January, agreeing on a $5.55 million salary for the 2018 campaign. Phelps will become eligible to become a free agent at the end of the season.
As the Mariners noted in their statement, the expected recovery period for Tommy John surgery is 12-15 months, so this very likely cuts into Phelps’ 2019 season as well.