Red Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale has given his team the worst possible news as they head into the second month of Spring Training, experiencing elbow trouble that has the entire organization worried.
Sale, who reported to Spring Training with pneumonia and was already expected to be delayed in his preparations for the 2020 regular season, experienced left elbow soreness after throwing a live batting practice session on Monday.
The elbow is the same one that gave the lanky lefty problems near the end of last season, with his team shutting him down in August. Despite rumors that he would need Tommy John Surgery, Sale ultimately only received a platelet-rich plasma injection that the team thought had fixed the problem.
Considering Monday’s surprising development, perhaps this assumption was erroneous.
Sale is expected to anchor the Red Sox’s rotation if healthy in 2020, which now seems like a big question mark. The Florida native signed a five-year, $145 million contract extension with Boston before last season which got off to a bad start after a disappointing year that was cut short by injury.
Sale is a seven-time All-Star, and his 2019 season was the first one since 2011 in which he was not named to the team.
For now, all Boston fans can do is sit back and wait to see if their star pitcher makes a quick recovery, or if he might be headed to the operating room.