Nathan Eovaldi hasn't pitched since his six shutout innings on April 17 against the New York Yankees. He has been rehabbing from surgery to remove loose bodies in his elbow.
However, it seems that Eovaldi is now close to returning, per Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora.
“He’s going to throw a bullpen this weekend,” Cora said to reporters, as captured by NESN. “He doesn’t feel great mechanic-wise, so we’ll wait and clean that up and then we’ll decide what we’re going to do after that. We don’t want to rush him if he doesn’t feel right. Obviously this is a guy that’s very important for us, and just to throw him out there when he’s not sound mechanic-wise, it doesn’t make sense for him or for us.”
Considering that Eovaldi's timeline for return was about six weeks, the timing would be right. He may be out a little bit longer than that, but the Red Sox will be careful with him as Cora indicated, especially considering the arm issues he has had in the past (two Tommy John surgeries).
That said, the Red Sox have been lacking a fifth option in their rotation since Eovaldi's absence. They have been forced to use spot starters Hector Velazquez and Ryan Weber in recent weeks, and the results have been mixed.
With Velazquez on the IL and Weber now demoted to the Pawtucket Red Sox, the team could really use Eovaldi. But, Cora said they will first see how he responds to the bullpen session.
In four starts this year, Eovaldi has a 0-0 record with a 6.00 ERA and 16 strikeouts. He had a 3-3 regular season record and 3.33 ERA in 11 starts for the Red Sox last year and proved to be a massive weapon out of the bullpen during their World Series run.
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