Well, it’s official. Drew Pomeranz is going to be starting the season on the 10-day disabled list. After Wednesday’s appearance in which he got hit hard all afternoon — a continuation of what’s been happening with the lefty all spring — this wasn’t too difficult to see coming. The official injury is a forearm flexor sprain.
As far as what this means for the rotation to start the season, at this point in time nothing has changed. This is an early example of how the 10-day disabled list will be more beneficial for teams, as they may not have gone through with this if they still had to wait the (old) normal 15 days. Since they made the move officially today, he is still lined up to return to action on April 9, which was the day he was originally scheduled to make his first start anyway.
Of course, that plan still hinges on him getting well enough by then. Even before they made this move, there was no guarantee he’d be ready for that first appearance of the regular season. On Wednesday, John Farrell said he wasn’t ready to give Pomeranz his stamp of approval. As of now, he is still scheduled to appear in a minor-league game on Monday as a tune-up start. If that goes well, he should be ready for action on the ninth. If not, the Red Sox will have to make other plans. As I’ve mentioned before, it becomes difficult to decide who to call-up for a stint that could only last a start or two. Kyle Kendrick is clearly the top depth option at the moment, but he’d also need to be exposed to waivers if he were to get sent back down. If the Red Sox don’t want to risk that (and they probably don’t, as a longer-term injury is always just one day away), either Henry Owens or Brian Johnson would likely get the call for a spot start.
So, at this point all we can do is cross our fingers and hope that everything goes well for Pomeranz. If that’s the case, this is just an opportunity for the Red Sox to carry an extra reliever or bench bat for the first few games of the year. If not, well, things get a little more complicated.