The Boston Red Sox were forced to place closer Andrew Bailey on the 15-day disabled list with an inflamed right bicep. There is no question this is a huge loss for the Red Sox as Bailey has been the top reliever on the team this year.
The 28-year-old began the 2013 Major League Baseball season in the setup role. Considering Bailey recorded four consecutive holds, and had so much success in the eighth inning, Boston decided to make him the closer. The right-hander blew his first save opportunity on April 15 against the Tampa Bay Rays, but has been lights out since then. He has recorded five consecutive saves in six opportunities.
The good news about Bailey’s injury is that there is no structural damage. Not to mention, since he has not pitched since April 29, his 15 days will be up on May 14. The Red Sox believe there is a strong possibility that Bailey will be able to pitch as soon as he is activated off the disabled list.
“We fully expect and are hopeful that this will be near the 15 days before he’s activated,” Red Sox manager John Farrell told RedSox.com.
Bailey has posted a 1-0 record with a 1.46 earned run average, 20 strikeouts and allowed only six hits in 12 1/3 innings this season. In order for him to keep his arm strength up so that he can continue to throw high velocity, Bailey will work out regularly in the weight room.
It is certainly a big blow for Boston, but it could be worse. The injury could have occurred down the stretch when the Red Sox need Bailey the most. Hopefully, the bullpen will be able to make up for Bailey’s loss, and keep the Red Sox on top of the American League East division.