Steven Wright’s Season Is Over And The Red Sox Rotation Is Wearing Thin

by Jake Archer | Posted on Friday, May 5th, 2017
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Yesterday it was announced that Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Steven Wright would miss the remainder of the season as he has elected to have surgery on Monday to repair a hole in the cartilage in his left knee. Sox fans had already known that Wright might be done for a while and that Spring Training star Kyle Kendrick would be taking his place in the rotation.

I like Steven Wright a lot, so don’t get me wrong, but I wasn’t that upset about losing him. Yes he was an All-Star and had an awesome year in 2016, but he’s a knuckleballer and he was coming back to reality. He just hadn’t been very good so far this year and I didn’t really see that changing. So beyond the fact that you never want to see a guy get injured, I was okay with this. Maybe Kendrick would even be an improvement!

Well, Kyle Kendrick had a rough first start last night for the Sox as he only went four innings while giving up six runs on eight hits. He walked two and only struck out one as well. It wasn’t impressive at all. Do I feel dumb for thinking Kendrick could pitch? No, because it’s just one start and I’m not giving up that easy. But do I feel a little worse about the Wright injury now? Yes.

I don’t feel worse about the Wright injury because I don’t think Kendrick can be better, but because I’m not sure Kendrick can be much better. He may just be very similar to what Wright was giving us and in that case, this is bad. If he was an improvement, I could have dealt with the loss of depth, but if he’s not then all that happened is the Sox lost a body.

The Red Sox, with a completely healthy starting rotation, already had questionable depth. But now, with David Price still out, Wright gone for the year and questions about the health and durability of Eduardo Rodriguez, the team is in a tight spot. The only real options to be filling in right now are Kendrick, Brian Johnson and Henry Owens. Owens is not someone I want to see starting a game for the Red Sox ever again and Kendrick and Johnson are still kind of mysteries.
God forbid an injury happens to Chris Sale, Rick Porcello, Drew Pomeranz or Rodriguez right now because I don’t know what they’ll be able to do. It’s not like the Sox have may assets anymore to go out and make a trade so it’s likely they’d be throwing minor league level players out there. This team would sink.

Luckily, the latest news on David Price is encouraging. He threw a three-inning simulated game at Fenway yesterday and touched 95 mph on the radar gun which is all exciting. But, with the injury that Price is trying to come back from or avoid, I’m too worried to feel good about him. The earliest he’ll be back is probably sometime around Memorial Day.

With the Red Sox having not drafted and developed a good starter in a very long time, they’ve had to lean heavily on going out to acquire pitching. It’s lucky they were able to get Chris Sale in that way this winter because when he’s doing the types of things he is doing, he certainly takes the pressure off and hides some of these issues that would be reaching emergency level without him.

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Jake Archer
About the Author

Jake is a sports blogger with a passion for baseball and the Red Sox. He loves pitcher's duels, ballpark food and listening to games on the radio. He's got some strong opinions on things like pace-of-play, the DH rule and more. Follow him on Twitter at @jarcher04.

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