Joe Kelly struck out 10 over 6 1/3 innings for Pawtucket on Monday, and manager John Farrell said all signs point to the righty pitching for the Red Sox on Saturday at Fenway Park against the Indians.
Rodriguez suffered a patella subluxation in his right knee during a Spring Training drill Feb. 27 and has been slow to recover.
During Rodriguez's Minor League outings, his velocity has generally been in the low 90s. At times, Rodriguez has admitted to either be favoring the knee or thinking about it too much.
"He has felt, on occasion, some soreness in the right knee," said Farrell. "He was obviously going through his starts, but there's a reason why -- and this now becomes the reason why -- there's been some restriction on his part to get that final 5 percent effort and related velocity that's still not there yet with Eduardo.
"He went through a full workup today with Dr. [Peter] Asnis. We're targeting Friday for another bullpen so we can still keep his arm in shape to a certain extent, but the game action is going to be held off for right now."
For now, the Red Sox can simply stop the clock on Rodriguez's assignment. But if Rodriguez winds up being shut down for seven days or longer, the Red Sox can start the clock back to 30 days if they need to. At this point, Farrell doesn't think that will be necessary. Before the setback, Rodriguez's rehab assignment was set to expire May 27.
Things are much more encouraging for Kelly, who has been out since April 20 with a right shoulder impingement.
"Joe came out of last night in good shape," Farrell said Tuesday. "Everything is pointing to him starting for us on Saturday. He's certainly a leading candidate for that."
Originally, the Red Sox hadn't planned on needing a fifth starter this week. But Monday's postponement in Kansas City bunched up the schedule to the point where Boston needs a pitcher for Saturday.