Heath Hembree was supposed to make a rehab appearance on Monday night as the relief pitcher tries to return from a forearm injury that has sidelined him for a couple of weeks. However, that didn't materialize after Hembree suffered a minor setback.
Alex Cora said that after throwing a bullpen over the weekend, Hembree simply wasn't ready to pitch in the rehab game. But he didn't seem to think that it was any sort of major setback.
“Probably one more day of rest and see how he feels tomorrow coming in,” Cora said, per MassLive.com's Chris Cotillo. “We’ll make a decision.”
“He’s feeling better,” Cora said, per Cotillo. “But no way we were going to send him for one inning the way he feels.”
This certainly is discouraging news for the Red Sox. They have missed Hembree, as he has logged a 0.60 ERA over his last 17 outings (15 innings pitched). Without him, they have lacked options in the back-end of the bullpen, and that has led to Matt Barnes, Brandon Workman, and Ryan Brasier receiving increased workloads.
Hembree's return will be key to spreading out work more. But right now, it's unclear whether or not he will return to the club in the near future.
In the interim, the team will get some bullpen help with knuckleballer Steven Wright set to return from an 80-game suspension. He will likely be activated on Tuesday.
Elsewhere, Cora also provided an update on Brock Holt, who exited Sunday's loss after suffering a hamstring injury.
“He was sore so we’ll stay away from him and see how he reacts to treatment tomorrow,” Cora said, per Cotillo. “Hopefully, toward the end of the week he can start again.”
Holt suffered the injury while trying to score from second base in the second inning against the Toronto Blue Jays. He stayed in the game for one inning after that before Eduardo Nunez replaced him at third base.
Thankfully, Rafael Devers returned to the team's lineup on Monday, so the team is better equipped to deal with Holt's absence. Still, they will be hoping that their super-utility player will be able to make a speedy recovery.
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