Matsuzaka back on DL with strained right trapezius muscle


Matsuzaka back on DL with strained right trapezius muscle

BALTIMORE -- Daisuke Matsuzaka has been placed back on the disabled list, retroactive to Saturday, after experiencing a strained right trapezius muscle.

Matsuzaka must spend a minimum of seven days on the DL before resuming another rehab assignment in the minors.

The Red Sox scratched him from a scheduled rehab start Tuesday night and gave him an injection to help the muscle over the weekend in Philadelphia.

"The same area flared up maybe three weeks ago," said Matsuzaka through an interpreter. "It was the same symptoms. It restricts my movement when I throw. At this point, that's why I got the shot and hopefully, it gets better from here.

"My rehab so far (from Tommy John surgery) has been going really well. It's a setback and it is a little bit disappointing. But I'm hoping the shot takes care of it and we can just continue my rehab from there."

Matsuzaka said he already feels the effect of the shot and is hopeful of throwing a bullpen later this week.

"We expect this issue will be resolved,'' said GM Ben Cherington, "because it's been resolved in the past. When that happens, we'll get him ramped back up and (sent out on another rehab).''

But Matsuzaka emphasized that he doesn't want to rush his return and compromise his health.

"I don't want to, and I don't think I can, pitch until I'm 100 percent physically and mentally,'' he said. "That's the type of patience I need to continue working with until I make a comeback."

Boston pitchers strike out 14, but Red Sox still fall to Rays, 7-3

Boston pitchers strike out 14, but Red Sox still fall to Rays, 7-3

The appearance of Tampa Bay Rays lefty Ryan Yarbrough almost got the Boston Red Sox back in their spring training exhibition game. The Sox managed to score all three of their runs against the 25-year-old in their 7-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays at Charlotte Sports Park in Port Charlotte, Florida on Sunday.

But the Rays, who scored runs in five different innings, managed to widen their lead in the eighth inning by beating up on Sox lefty Luis Isla, a 24-year-old who spent last season with Portland and Pawtucket. In the eighth, Rays' Joe McCarthy homered and Luke Maile managed an RBI single, which cappped off the scoring in the contest. Sox starter Hector Velazquez allowed three hits and an earned run in his two innnings. The 28-year-old, who spent 2016 in the Mexican League, still managed to amass four strikeouts.

"I was a little nervous at the start, being in the United States for the first time and playing for a big league club for the first time," Velazquez told through an interpreter. "But once I got the first out, all the nerves went away, and I was able to bear down."

Despite allowing two homers, Boston pitchers combined for 14 strikeouts.

With the exception of the Sox' inning against Yarbrough, Boston's veterans and prospects struggled mighltily against the Rays pitching staff. Chris Archer started for Tampa, and set the tone in the first two innings, where he threw two strikeouts, one walk and allowed one hit and no runs. Andrew Benintendi (0-for-3), Sam Travis (0-for-2) and Bryce Brentz (0-for-3) went hitless on the day. Travis, however, reached base on balls.

"I felt good. I accomplished what I wanted to accomplish," Archer said, via the Red Sox' team website. "Just out there having fun, it was really fun to be out there in the spectrum with the umpire, the fans, the batter. It was fun."

Marco Hernandez's triple got the Sox' eighth-inning off to a strong start, and singles from Matt Dominguez, Deven Marrero, Rusney Castillo and Cole Sturgeon followed. The Sox' eighth inning scoring ended after Castillo got thrown out by left fielder McCarthy at third. Six Red Sox finished with one-hit outings, including Brock Holt and Blake Swihart.

The Sox will next host the St. Louis Cardinals in Fort Myers on Monday at 1:05 p.m. ET.