Tanner Houck and other pitching injury updates

Contributing Writer

After pulling Tanner Houck from last Wednesday's start for the Worcester Red Sox, the Red Sox reported a right flexor muscle injury. 

That injury shuts down Houck for and undetermined amount of time.

While Alex Cora said the Red Sox were not overly concerned, it's always concerning when your top pitching depth has issues in the elbow of their throwing arm.

Houck was the first in line for any pitching needs the Red Sox might have, due to injury or scheduling issues. He's made three appearances for the Red Sox so far this year and posted an 0-2 record with a 4.35 ERA

Yesterday Cora gave an update on the progress of the injury process.

“He’s getting treatment already I don’t know about the specifics. But he’s feeling better,” Cora told reporters. “We just gotta make sure he is where he’s supposed to be. He’s very important to this organization. Not only this year but for the future. So when things like this happen, you’ve got to be smart about it and take your time. But as a whole, the training staff and everybody that I’ve talked to, they feel very comfortable that this is just something short-term. So he’ll be OK.”

It looks like Houck is not only dealing with minor league purgatory, but will now have to work his way back from a sensitive elbow injury to ensure durability.

Other pitching injury updates

Remember Ryan Brasier, the reliever that came out of the bullpen in Game 1 of the 2018 ALDS striking out two Yankees before telling Gary Sanchez to get back in the box for his strike out?

Brasier has had a rough start to 2021, dealing with a fractured right pinky finger. Then he started the spring with a setback by leaving camp in February for a personal reason. Since March he's been trying to work his way back from a calf injury that put him initially on crutches. 

For the first time there was positive progress as Brasier threw a bullpen in Fort Meyers this last week.

“It was a good one,” Cora said. “I think it was a 20, 25 pitch bullpen. And he was pretty solid.”

There are not plans set for when and if he's going to start his rehab assignment in Triple-A Worcester.

In other pitching prospect injury news, Connor Seabold was forced to start the Triple-A season the the injured list due to elbow inflammation. He's a depth starter for the Red Sox and this is never good news though Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom was upbeat when asked about it.

“Connor is dealing with some minor elbow soreness,” Bloom said. “It’s a long season and so we’d rather address this now rather than try to push through it. He’s on a gradual progression back to full strength.”

Another final point of interest, back in April the top ranked Red Sox pitching prospect for the 2021 season Bryan Mata underwent Tommy John surgery.

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