Chris Sale's latest DL stint has Cora focused on future, September


BOSTON — Alex Cora on Monday afternoon did not lay out a plan publicly for Chris Sale to begin throwing, two days after the lefty went back to the disabled list with left shoulder inflammation.

“Not yet,” Cora said of developing such a plan. “We haven’t talked about that.”

From the sound of it, though, Sale won’t arrive at Fenway Park one day this week, feel good and start throwing — not this soon. Cora did not rule out such a scenario, but it is not what the team is hoping for.

“It might happen, but I don’t think that’s the goal for us,” he said.


Instead, after Sale already came back from the disabled list once and felt discomfort again, it sounds like the Sox are aiming for Sale to take more time.

“It’s not that he’s going to go out there and feel it a little bit, and the next day, it’ll be better,” Cora said. “What we’re trying to accomplish here is for him to be pain-free, and then just go from there.”

What will tell the Sox that Sale is ready to throw will also include strength tests.

“All the strength tests that they’re doing,” Cora said. “Like I said, we’re not going to push him. We’re not shooting for Sunday or Friday or whenever. We’re shooting for whenever he’s ready. So as of now, he’s going through all these exercises. … The inflammation has to go, getting treatment."

While Cora noted the goal is for Sale to be pain-free, his workload will be managed upon his presumed return.

“We did the first day in Baltimore,” Cora said. “It was what, 65-75 pitches? It was 75 pitches [as a limit] but it took a while to get him going again and we shut him down. We decided not to pitch him now. 

“We’ll make sure he’s OK. And this is not only for Chris, but for the whole pitching staff. We want them to be trending up in September. I don’t want them to be trending down. Obviously Sept. 1 is a huge day for everybody here [when rosters expand and help arrives].

"I don’t want them to go mid-September and the stuff is trending down. It should be the other way around."


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