Vázquez's status for Opening Day in flux

Backstop sustains eye laceration, but Cora confident he'll emerge OK

March 26th, 2021

The Red Sox had a scary moment on one of their backfields Thursday afternoon when catcher Christian Vázquez was struck in the face during a team drill and suffered a contusion and laceration under his left eye.

Vázquez, one of Boston’s core players, was hit by a thrown ball, causing his sunglasses to shatter into his face.

Fortunately, it looks as if Vázquez dodged a serious injury. The club is hopeful he will be ready for Opening Day on April 1 at Fenway Park against the Orioles.

“He went through tests and all that. We feel like he should be OK,” said Red Sox manager Alex Cora. “Obviously it was kind of scary. He’s got to go through some [more] tests, probably Saturday. But we’re confident that he’ll be OK for next week.”

It was an unsettling moment that brought everything to a halt for a few minutes at the Fenway South complex.

“We were in a drill. There was a ball thrown. I don’t know if he was looking somewhere [else],” Cora said. “I was actually looking at the play and all of a sudden I saw him down. There was a throw made, it hit him; he had these big glasses -- it hit him in the glasses and got him in the left cheek there. It was one of those drills, we were doing PFPs with runners and all that. It was just a freak accident.”

If Vázquez can’t make it back by Thursday, the Red Sox have a veteran backup to fill in for him in Kevin Plawecki.

Connor Wong, the club's No. 17 prospect per MLB Pipeline, who was one of the players acquired in the trade with the Dodgers for Mookie Betts a year ago, would be a potential call-up if Vázquez recovers slower than expected and has to open the season on the injured list.