The bad news just keeps coming this season, and this could have the potential to be the worst of it all. We don’t have all of the details just yet, but the Red Sox placed Chris Sale on the injured list with elbow inflammation prior to Saturday’s game against the Orioles. Taking his spot on the active roster will be Ryan Brasier.
The #RedSox today placed LHP Chris Sale on the 10-day injured list with left elbow inflammation, retroactive to August 14.— Red Sox (@RedSox) August 17, 2019
To fill Sale’s spot on the 25-man roster, the club recalled RHP Ryan Brasier from Triple-A Pawtucket.
This is brutal, brutal news and exactly what the Red Sox didn’t need right now. In the context of this season, it’s obviously a gut punch. Boston only had a very, very slight chance at making the postseason in 2019 and even they acknowledged that they were going to need great starting pitching to make it happen. Losing your best starting pitcher to injury shortly after making that kind of declaration might just be a sign this isn’t your year.
Where this one becomes really tough is the potential that this is something to worry about beyond 2019. Right now, we have no idea just how serious the injury is. As the Eagle Tribune’s Chris Mason writes, Dave Dombrowski held a very vague press conference on Saturday to announce the move. When asked if he was confident the injury isn’t serious, he replied that he couldn’t answer that. When asked if Sale will pitch again in 2019, Dombrowski simply answere with a simple “I don’t know.” Not great!
Sale is going to visit Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion on the elbow, which is certainly never good news. I think most of us would agree that, even if this isn’t a definite season-ender, Sale should be shut down if there is even the slightest chance this injury can get worse. As I said, the chances of the Red Sox making the playoffs are so slim that they need to be focused on 2020 at least as much as they’re focused on 2019. We will of course keep our eyes out for more information on this story.
As for Brasier, well, the Red Sox get a fresh arm up in the ‘pen with some potential upside. After taking a major step back for most of the year the righty pitched very well in his stint with Pawtucket. Brasier tossed 9 1⁄3 innings in Triple-A, allowing one run on six hits and a walk with 13 strikeouts.