David Price at spring training (USA Today Sports/Kim Klement).
David Price continued his rehab progress on Saturday with two innings of a simulated game.
“It was a quality work day for him,” said manager John Farrell. “Accomplished what the plan was, which was two simulated innings after he warmed up. Good intensity, so a good day for him. When he walked off he said he felt good, we’ll check and see how things feel tomorrow.”
Price has been on the disabled list since spring training with an elbow injury and suffered a setback a couple of weeks ago, when he was supposed to face live batters. That was finally accomplished Saturday prior to the Red Sox game against the Cubs.
He is now scheduled for a light bullpen on Monday.
“What we’ve tentative put in place is this again in five days with an increase of 15 pitches,” said Farrell. “That’s subject to how he feels physically over the coming days.”
The manager said that Price mixed in a cutter during the simulated game, and there was no radar gun.
There is still no definitive timetable.
“He went through BP progression and first outing was a sim game,” said Farrell. “We’re happy with progress he’s making and will continue to take this week by week.”
OTHER RED SOX NOTES
— Christian Vazquez is back behind the plate for the Red Sox for the second straight day.
“Recognize where Sandy [Leon] has had success at the right side of the plate, left side has been inconsistent at the moment,” said Farrell. “We’re fortunate we have two quality guys we can turn to. The fact that this is back to back days for Christian, he’s playing well.”
Leon is hitting .180 this season with only three extra base hits.
“He’s been getting quality stuff thrown at him with a good mix of four seamers up and away from him with a good depth breaking ball,” said Farrell. “That’s a tough combination for anybody and he’s had trouble with that sequence against him.”
— Fernando Abad had one of his best outings in a Red Sox uniform on Friday night when he struck out two Cubs in a high leverage situation in the eighth inning.
“I think the one thing he’s done a very good job at, when he first came here he had two changeups, a slow one, the velocity change was sizable but the effectiveness of that pitch was less-than,” said Farrell. “I think he’s done a good job of throwing more consistently the harder changeup, it gives more deception to the hitter and he struck out both guys on it last night.”
In 4.2 innings this season, Abad has given up two runs. Last season, he posted a 6.39 ERA in just 12.2 innings.
“Quality of strikes, and the fact that he’s sharpened up the pitch mix,” Farrell said. “I know he came away from that with a boost of confidence in his own right. You saw the emotion when he came off the mound, good appearance by him.’
— Tyler Thornburg is also closing in on a return.
“The intensity in which he’s throwing up to 120 feet has picked up the past couple of days,” said Farrell. “This has been lengthy, there’s movement forward at this point.”
Thornburg has been on the DL since before the season with a shoulder injury, but it appears he is getting closer in his rehab.
“There’s been some adjustments here recently in the sequence of the warmup and the work and he’s responded favorably to that,” Farrell said. “We still want to get him to 150 feet of long toss or more before he’s on the mound but that day is getting closer.”