It was pretty clear that Joel Hanrahan was dealing with a serious injury when the Red Sox moved him to the 60-day disabled list earlier this week, but now we have some clarity on the situation. And it’s not good.
According to Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal, Hanrahan confirmed this morning that he will undergo season-ending surgery on his flexor tendon. Hanrahan said that he didn’t really have a choice, as the tendon is “torn off the bone.” Ouch.
Evan Drellich of MassLive.com reports that Hanrahan will likely have the surgery next week. The repair of the flexor tendon will sideline him for six months, though there’s a chance he could also require Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery, which would knock him out of action for at least one year.
Hanrahan was acquired from the Pirates during the offseason to serve as Boston’s closer, but he ended up posting a 9.82 ERA and 5/6 K/BB ratio in 7 1/3 innings with the club. The 31-year-old is set to hit the free agent market this winter. It’s worth noting that Mark Melancon, one of the players sent to Pittsburgh in the Hanrahan deal, has a 0.50 ERA and 18/0 K/BB ratio over 18 innings this season.
Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.
The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.
The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.