Koji still unavailable; no decision if DL stint is needed
NEW YORK -- The Red Sox were without Koji Uehara for the second consecutive day as they faced the Yankees on Saturday afternoon, and after both the closer and manager John Farrell slow-played the significance of the shoulder tightness Uehara experienced while throwing before Friday's game, the team has elected not to rush its decision about a possible trip to the disabled list.
"He's unavailable today," said Farrell before Saturday's game. "We haven't gotten to the point of any roster move with him. We're still gathering information. We'll look to put him through a little bit of a throwing program tomorrow, and that's the next step, so right now still unavailable."
Uehara felt discomfort in his right shoulder during his regular pregame throwing program on Friday, and Farrell turned to offseason acquisition Edward Mujica to preserve a two-run lead in the ninth inning of the Red Sox's 4-2 win.
The 39-year-old Uehara told reporters the tightness felt similar to an injury that caused him to miss more than two months of action during the 2012 season with the Rangers. Uehara missed 66 games with a right lat strain and returned to make 17 appearances down the stretch that year, with 21 strikeouts and a 1.23 ERA in 14 2/3 innings.
"This is the first time we've had to deal with him being unavailable, so we've got to respect how he reacts to the discomfort that's there, the tightness that's there," Farrell said. "We also know that when he was in Texas, there was a setback during the time that he was on the DL, so to say that this is a direct comparison to two years ago is probably a little bit too early, but we'll take every precaution to get him back fully when he's able to return."
Farrell said that Uehara may attempt to resume his daily throwing program, which includes long toss from up to 200 feet, on Sunday afternoon. After capping off their four-game set in the Bronx on Sunday night, the Red Sox have a day off before starting a three-game set against the White Sox in Chicago. That extra day could help the team determine whether or not Uehara will need to be placed on the 15-day disabled list.
"It's another day available to us, and based on the information we get tomorrow, it gives us the possibility of him returning to Boston to be checked out," Farrell said. "That's not set in stone yet, but it is a possibility, and we're still gathering information along the way."