The Red Sox announced today that right-hander Steven Wright has undergone surgery on his left knee. Specifically, he received an arthroscopy and debridement on the joint.
At this point, a timeline isn’t known. The club says that Wright “will continue to rehab and prepare for a return to pitching in the 2019 season.”
It’s not particularly surprising to hear of the procedure, as Wright has long dealt with issues in that joint. A prior surgery knocked him out for almost all of the 2017 season. After making it back and becoming a productive member of the staff again in 2018, Wright hit the DL late in the season when he began dealing with pain and inflammation.
At the time that his recent issues arose, Wright indicated that the belief was he was suffering from “loose bodies” in the knee. If that’s all that was at issue, perhaps there’s reason to hope that there’ll be plenty of time for Wright to work back to full health before Spring Training.
The Boston organization will certainly hope the prognosis is promising. Wright projects to earn only $1.4MM in arbitration in 2019, with one more season of control still to come thereafter, making him an affordable asset. And he’s fresh off of a season in which he showed well in a multi-inning swingman role. Over four starts and 16 relief appearances, Wright worked to a 2.68 ERA with 42 strikeouts and 26 walks over 53 2/3 frames. Though his K/BB numbers fail to impress, the knuckler was seemingly legitimately tough to square up, as Statcast figures suggest (.288 wOBA, .306 xwOBA, 26.8 hard-hit rate).