Burgeoning Rays ace Tyler Glasnow has been on the shelf since May 10 with right forearm tightness, an injury that will keep him out for at least several more weeks after a recent setback. But Glasnow issued an encouraging update Sunday, per Juan Toribio of MLB.com. The 25-year-old revealed his UCL “looks really good” and said that he expects to pitch again this season. He’ll still remain in shutdown mode over the next two weeks, though.
Tampa Bay lost to AL East rival New York in Glasnow’s most recent start, though the Rays still boasted a 23-14 record and a half-game lead over the Yankees at that point. The tables have turned during Glasnow’s lengthy absence, as the Rays have gone a middling 24-22 and now trail the Yankees by seven games. They still hold a one-game lead on the AL’s No. 1 wild-card position, however.
It’s obvious Glasnow’s injury isn’t the lone reason for Tampa Bay’s team-wide decline, but it clearly hasn’t helped. The 6-foot-8 hurler opened the season in dazzling fashion, with a 1.86 ERA/2.27 FIP, 10.24 K/9 against 1.68 BB/9, and a 51.7 percent groundball rate across 48 1/3 innings.
With reigning Cy Young winner Blake Snell having taken sizable steps back this year, Glasnow’s injury has been all the more damaging to the club. Charlie Morton has been outstanding, and Yonny Chirinos has also done well in an expanded role, but the Rays have been limited to those two and Snell as traditional starters. The Rays could explore the market for starters before the July 31 trade deadline as a result, though they did just promote high-end prospect Brendan McKay. The 23-year-old gave Tampa Bay a much-needed six innings of one-hit ball in a win over Texas on Saturday.