The Red Sox announced that they’ve reinstated left-hander David Price from the 10-day injured list. He’ll start this afternoon’s game against the Blue Jays. Boston also reinstated catcher Sandy Leon from paternity leave and, in a pair of corresponding moves, optioned catcher Oscar Hernandez and righty Josh Smith to Triple-A Pawtucket.
Price’s stay on the injured list due to elbow tendinitis proved to only be a couple of weeks long. His return is nevertheless notable, as Boston has had to patch together its rotation with both Price and Nathan Eovaldi on the shelf due to injury. In recent weeks, the Sox have turned to Smith and fellow righty Hector Velazquez to start games (without receiving much in the way of quality results).
Price will join Chris Sale, Rick Porcello and Eduardo Rodriguez in the top four spots of the rotation, though the fifth spot will remain somewhat of a question mark until Eovaldi returns from an April 21 elbow procedure that was expected to sideline him for up to six weeks. In 36 innings so far in 2019, Price has a 3.75 ERA with a 42-to-10 K/BB ratio. Although his velocity isn’t quite what it once was, averaging 92.3 mph, Price’s 13.6 percent swinging-strike rate marks a four-percent increase over his 2018 level and would represent a career-high if he can sustain it.