No starting pitcher is safe. First, Eduardo Rodriguez tweaked his knee this winter. Then, Drew Pomeranz and Steven Wright got off to late starts in camp. Then, David Price went through his Tommy John scare. Finally, Rick Porcello got hit in the hand on a comebacker and left his last start early. Of course, all of these guys are (mostly) fine, but it’s a reminder that spring training is just the worst.
We got another one of those moments on Thursday, as Roenis Elias left the field just moments before the Red Sox were set to start their game against Team U.S.A.
Breaking: Expect a scratch of Red Sox SP Roenis Elias. Being helped off field. Looked like lower half injury while warming up. pic.twitter.com/jzbZLHE9YQ— Michael Silverman (@MikeSilvermanBB) March 9, 2017
We don’t know much much more about the injury at this point, though we’ll update when more information comes out. Jalen Beeks will replace Elias as the team’s starter.
UPDATE: It’s an intercostal muscle strain for Elias.
UPDATE 2: Elias will miss a couple of weeks, which likely puts him out for the start of the season.
Elias obviously isn’t as major of a piece as anyone mentioned at the top of this post, but he is part of the group who is fighting to be the first line of defense should Boston need a starter from Pawtucket. Henry Owens and Brian Johnson were the favorites heading into camp, but neither has taken a hold on the job. That’s opened up a more realistic chance for Elias, Kyle Kendrick and Hector Velazquez. Depending on the severity of whatever this injury is, this could be a blow to Elias’ chances.