Boston Red Sox left-handed ace David Price, who traveled to Indianapolis Thursday to have his sore pitching elbow examined by top sports medicine specialist Dr. James Andrews — sparking fears that Price may require Tommy John surgery, which would cause him to miss the 2017 Major League Baseball season — received good news from Andrews on Friday, according to reports from MLB.com and Boston media.
The five-time All Star selection who previously pitched for the Tampa Bay Rays, Detroit Tigers and Toronto Blue Jays reported soreness in his pitching elbow during Wednesday’s workout at the Red Sox Spring Training facility in Fort Myers, Florida. After an MRI exam proved inconclusive, Price and the team decided that he should seek a second opinion from Andrews.
Price will not require surgery on the elbow, Andrews determined. Instead the famed orthopedic surgeon prescribed seven to 10 days of rest for Price, accompanied by a medication program to alleviate the pain and bring down any inflammation in the elbow, the report said.
David Price will avoid surgery and be shut down for 7-10 days pic.twitter.com/8jh1iFi3uN
— MLB Roundup (@MLB_Roundup) March 3, 2017
Price himself posted a message to his Twitter account Friday afternoon, saying that he was departing Indianapolis — and making a joke about the NFL Draft Combine currently underway in that city. But in his tweet, Price did not mention the status of his elbow injury.
Indy is a little chilly right now so I’m gonna head back to fort myers! My 40 time was 4.11…ill let one of you name my island
— David Price (@DAVIDprice24) March 3, 2017
But Red Sox Manager John Farrell, who had earlier described the team as “concerned” about the extent of Price’s elbow injury, spoke to reporters following the team’s 9-1 Spring Training win over the Atlanta Braves on Friday, calling the results of Price’s visit with Andrews the “best case scenario.”
“We got positive news after the exam by Dr. Andrews and Dr. ElAttrache,” Farrell told the Boston media. “No surgery, no PRP or any injection of any kind.”
Barring surgery, there had been a possibility that Price would require therapeutic injections in his elbow, which could also prolong his time away from the mound for the Red Sox.
After signing a seven-year, $217 million free agent contract with Boston prior to the 2016 season, Price proved to be a disappointment to Red Sox Nation, though he posted solid statistics including a 3.99 ERA and 228 strikeouts with a 1.204 Walks-Plus-Hits-per-Inning-Pitched (WHIP) ratio.
Price’s ERA and WHIP were the 31-year-old Price’s highest of his nine-year MLB career.
The most valuable stat posted by the lefty in 2016 was his league-leading 230 innings pitched, a feat of durability that contributed to the Red Sox mostly solid bullpen performance last year.
Price, a native of Tennessee, was the top overall pick in the 2007 MLB draft, going to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays out of Tennessee’s Vanderbilt University.
“We’ve talked about him experiencing this type of forearm issue in spring training, it may be a little bit more intensified this year, but still kind of the ‘spring training arm’ he goes through,” Farrell told reporters Friday afternoon. “So a very positive exam given the concern a couple days ago.”
In the offseason, the Red Sox acquired another durable left-handed starter to strengthen the pitching rotation around Price, when they traded for 27-year-old Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale, who led the American League in complete games in 2016 with six, while nearly equalling Price with 226 2/3 innings pitched.
Sale, in his seventh season all spent with the White Sox, posted a 3.34 ERA in 2016, and a 1.037 WHIP, the second-lowest of his career. The Lakeland, Florida, native also fanned 233, more than one per inning.
[Featured Image By Leon Halip/Getty Images]