BOSTON -- Third baseman Rafael Devers had been playing with discomfort in his left shoulder for more than three weeks, going all the way back to the series in Seattle. Although the Red Sox appreciated his willingness to play hurt, they decided on Thursday that some rest would be best.Devers
BOSTON -- Third baseman Rafael Devers had been playing with discomfort in his left shoulder for more than three weeks, going all the way back to the series in Seattle. Although the Red Sox appreciated his willingness to play hurt, they decided on Thursday that some rest would be best.
Devers was placed on the disabled list retroactive to Wednesday with inflammation in the shoulder. He hopes he will be ready to play when eligible, which will be the second game after the All-Star break, on July 21 at Detroit.
If Devers comes back that soon, he will have only missed six games. Eduardo Nunez will start at third while Devers is out, with Brock Holt getting most of the playing time at second.
Tzu-Wei Lin was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket in the corresponding roster move.
"I think I'm just going to do the best I can to recover in these 10 days and be back by that second game in Detroit," Devers said. "In Seattle was initially when I first started feeling some slight discomfort. I didn't say anything. I just kept playing through it, and progressively it just got worse."
Devers remembers the injury occurring when he dove back into first base on a line drive by Holt on June 17. There was some speculation that the injury was sustained on his awkward slide into home on July 4 at Washington, as he seemed to land on his shoulder.
"Yeah, I mean, the slide didn't feel any different, because I already had the discomfort," he said. "It was just the feeling that I was already kind of used to at that point. I wanted to keep playing, to help the team, but then eventually I just got to a point where I asked the trainers what they thought and they suggested that it would be best to take some time."
How did the injury start to affect Devers?
"It hurts me basically when I'm swinging. Moving forward, every time I swung, it started to hurt," said Devers. "First [full] season, I wanted to keep playing no matter what, but then it gets to a point where you can't bear it and you start to think that for one's career, it's best to talk about it and let people know. So that's just what I did."
"Like I said yesterday, [he's been] a little bit banged up," said manager Alex Cora. "He's been playing for a while like that. Something I really appreciated. He never asked out of the lineup. But lately his swing ... I noticed it his second-to-last at-bat two days ago; it was a breaking ball he hit into a double play, and you could see usually he finishes with two hands, and that one he let go and I said, 'This is not the way we want it to be,' so we talked a little bit."
In 89 games this season, Devers is slashing .241/.292/.424 with 14 homers and 48 RBIs.
"He said it was bothering him not only offensively but defensively," said Cora. "So it's good timing. We've got four games and then the All-Star break, and hopefully he can come back for the first series in Detroit."
Lining up rotation after break
Cora has mapped out his rotation after the All-Star break, with David Price starting the first game in Detroit on July 20. Either Thomas Pomeranz or Christopher Johnson (both currently on the DL) will likely pitch the second game. Ace Chris Sale will draw the Sunday afternoon finale.
That means Price will have seven days of rest between starts. Sale, who has been magnificent of late, will get five rest days until he starts or pitches in relief in the All-Star Game presented by Mastercard, then he will get another four days of rest after the Midsummer Classic. Rick Porcello and Eduardo Rodriguez, who are pitching on Friday and Saturday in this current four-game series against the Blue Jays, will make their first post-break turns in the series at Baltimore July 23 and 24.
Pomeranz's next tuneup
Pomeranz, who last pitched for the Red Sox on May 31, will make a third Minor League rehab start on Friday for Triple-A Pawtucket.
Last time out, Pomeranz allowed a run over three innings. The lefty is coming back from left biceps tendinitis and a sore neck. He has pitched just eight games this season, going 1-3 with a 6.81 ERA.
What will the Red Sox be looking for on Friday?
"Consistency with his mechanics," Cora said. "That's the most important thing with him -- [for him to] be on time, and be consistent with his release point."
Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.