By Alex Barth, 985TheSportsHub.com
Still starved for arms, the Red Sox placed three pitchers on the injury report Wednesday morning.
Eduardo Rodriguez, Josh Taylor, and Darwinzon Hernandez are now on the IL with just nine days until ‘Opening Day.’ All three had tested positive for COVID-19 in recent days, so the move doesn’t come as much of a surprise.
Rodriguez started 34 games for Boston last season, going 19-6 with a 3.81 ERA. He finished sixth in AL Cy Young voting.
Taylor pitched 52 games out of the bullpen for the Red Sox as a rookie in 2019, posting a 3.04 ERA. He allowed just one earned run in five innings of work this spring before baseball shut down.
Hernandez pitched in 29 games last year after being called up by the club mid-season. The 23-year-old lefty is considered one of the top prospects in the Red Sox organization.
Under Major League Baseball’s COVID-19 protocols, players who have tested positive are not eligible to return until passing a number of qualifications. Those individuals have to have two negative tests at least 24 hours apart, complete an antibody test, no longer be showing symptoms, and be cleared by team and league doctors.
The Red Sox have already had one player go through the process. Bobby Dalbec tested positive at some point before the team reported to Fenway Park for Summer Camp, and returned to practice on July 11.
This all comes less than two weeks out from the Red Sox scheduled return to action – against the Orioles on July 24. Rodriguez was scheduled to get that start, but if he is still sidelined, the team is expected to have Nathan Eovaldi on the bump at Fenway.