Spring training is right around the corner, but neither Drew Pomeranz nor Steven Wright will throw off a mound anytime soon. That’s the word from Red Sox’ GM John Farrell, who told reporters on Sunday that Wright has not fully recovered from a bout of bursitis in his right shoulder (via Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald). Pomeranz is still rehabbing his elbow after receiving a stem cell injection in October.
Mastrodonato points out that neither starter is expected to miss the start of the regular season, at least not for the time being. Both pitchers will undergo physicals on Monday that should give the team more information to go off of, though it makes sense to take things slow over the next month or so.
Wright, 32, enjoyed his first All-Star season with the Red Sox in 2016. He turned in a 3.33 ERA, 3.3 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 in 156 2/3 innings before hitting the disabled list in August with shoulder issues. Previous reports from the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo suggested that the knuckleballer would be ready to go by mid-February, but while he’s made progress throwing on flat ground, he still needs to build up his arm strength before taking the mound again.
Pomeranz, on the other hand, could risk losing his rotation spot if the rest of the spring doesn’t go according to plan. At least, that’s how Mastrodonato sees things, noting that the 28-year-old experienced issues beyond his health problems during the 2016 season. After putting up a 2.47 ERA, 10.1 SO/9 and 5.9 H/9 with the Padres through the first half of the year, Pomeranz had trouble adjusting to the confines of Fenway Park and delivered a 4.59 ERA, 9.3 SO/9 and 9.2 H/9 in 68 2/3 innings with the Red Sox. Should the left-hander find himself out of a starting role come April, however, the Sox will still have to count on Wright and fellow rehabbing starter Eduardo Rodriguez to flesh out the rotation.