When the Red Sox placed former closer and current set-up man Andrew Bailey on the DL earlier this week, the writing was on the wall for the team shutting Bailey down for the year. On Sunday, that became the cruel reality for the 29-year-old right hander.
The team, through manager John Farrell, announced Sunday that Bailey will have season-ending surgery to repair significant damage to his pitching shoulder. At first report, the surgery will shut Bailey down for approximately a calendar year, and the team seemingly employed every avenue to avoid the surgery before settling on it as the only viable option. In fact, Bailey himself has succumbed to the season-ending reality if this quote is any indication:
“The only way to fix this is surgery — 100 percent fix it. This isn’t going to heal on its own.”
It doesn’t get more clear cut than that, and the Red Sox will now have three pitchers from their opening day bullpen (Bailey will join Joel Hanrahan and Andrew Bailey) on the shelf for the final 3 months. The “injury plagued” label seems to follow Bailey wherever he goes after a checkered stay in Oakland, but prior to this season, he was always tremendous when healthy. However, Bailey struggled to a 3.77 ERA (4.76 FIP) this year, and it was clear that he was laboring as a result of the injury.
With Boston entering Sunday night’s game with the Yankees with a 59-40 record, it isn’t time to fret about Bailey’s absence. With that said, the bullpen is now a diagnosed issue for the Red Sox, and that fan base should keep an eye on the front office as the trade deadline approaches.