UPDATE: It’s official. Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald reports that Matsuzaka has been placed on the disabled list. Alfredo Aceves will take his place in the starting rotation Saturday against the Cubs.
6:50 PM: Daisuke Matsuzaka was sent for an MRI on his elbow Tuesday, the Boston Globe reports, and is expected to go on the disabled list after giving up five runs and walking seven in 4 1/3 innings in an ugly outing against the Orioles on Monday night.
Matsuzaka had two brilliant starts for the Red Sox last month, allowing two hits over 15 scoreless innings against the Blue Jays and Angels, before leaving his April 29 outing with elbow tightness. The Red Sox said that was strictly a precaution, but he hasn’t pitched well in his three outing since, including his relief loss in extra innings against the Angels on May 4.
The Red Sox aren’t at all sure whether it’s really an injury that has him down, though.
“It has not been ready yet. We don’t really have much to discuss,” Terry Francona said of the MRI. “We’re talking about his elbow. Whether it’s sore or whether he’s afraid to get to a point where it will get sore, we’re trying to figure it out.”
The Boston Herald’s Scott Lauber pointed out that it may be something else entirely, tweeting the following:
For what it’s worth, pitching coach Curt Young believes Daisuke Matsuzaka’s issues last night were a product of illness, not injury
But whether he’s truly hurt or not, it looks like Dice-K will join John Lackey on the DL for Boston. Reliever Michael Bowden is expected to be added to the roster in his place.
The Orioles announced, prior to Sunday’s game against the Yankees, that the club signed pitcher Tommy Hunter to a major league contract. In related roster moves, the club recalled pitcher Oliver Drake from Triple-A Norfolk and designated pitcher T.J. McFarland and outfielder Julio Borbon for assignment.
The Indians released Hunter on Thursday after he struggled in a rehab assignment with Triple-A Columbus. Hunter was recovering from a non-displaced fracture in his lower back. The right-hander put up a respectable 3.74 ERA with a 17/5 K/BB ratio in 21 2/3 innings for the Indians.
This will be Hunter’s second stint with the Orioles. The O’s had acquired him along with first baseman Chris Davis at the trade deadline from the Rangers in 2011 in the Koji Uehara trade.
The Orioles are only responsible for paying Hunter the prorated major league minimum.
Orioles DH Mark Trumbo drilled a two-run home run to left-center field off of reliever Ben Heller in the eighth inning of Sunday afternoon’s game against the Yankees. In doing so, he became the first player to reach the 40-homer plateau this season.
Trumbo finished 1-for-4 on the afternoon. Along with the 40 dingers, he’s hitting .257/.317/.541 with 96 RBI. He has already set a career-high in homers and is four RBI away from tying his career high in that regard.
Trumbo is eligible for free agency after the season. Needless to say, his performance in 2016 bodes well for his ability to secure a hefty contract.