Boston Red Sox left-hander David Price, who has been on the disabled list all season with a strained elbow, pitched a simulated game Sunday in Pawtucket after the PawSox's game with Rochester was rained out. After checking out OK following a 75-pitch outing in the Pawtucket batting tunnel, Price will make his 2017 debut on the mound Friday night at 7:05 in Coca-Cola Field in an injury rehab outing against the Buffalo Bisons.
According to the Boston Globe, Price had pitched three simulated games and the last one had come Tuesday. His workload will likely be racheted up to 90-95 pitches for a start here Friday, with the Sox hopeful he could rejoin the major-league rotation as soon as May 24.
Price, 31, was 17-9 with a 3.99 ERA in 35 starts for the Sox last season and finished fourth in the American League with 228 strikeouts in 230 innings. He has a career record of 121-65 with Tampa Bay, Detroit, Toronto and Boston. Price signed a seven-year, $217-million contract with the Sox -- the largest ever given to a pitcher -- in December, 2015.
Price's return would be a huge boost for a Boston rotation that has mostly struggled, aside from new ace Chris Sale. Reigning Cy Young Award winner Rick Porcello is just 2-5, 4.01 in eight starts, Drew Pomeranz is 3-2, 5.23 in six starts and knuckleballer Steven Wright (1-3, 8.25) has been lost for the season due to knee surgery.
Price is scheduled to be opposed by Buffalo's Mat Latos, who has 71 big-league wins of his own.
The Bisons opened a seven-game homestand Monday at 6:05 against Syracuse. The homestand features a bevy of promotions -- including a "No Rain Guarantee" -- and will be capped by Blue Jays Weekend on May 20-21, with the club wearing the Toronto Blue Jays' powder-blue style of the 70s and autograph appearances from Jays' alumni.
— Buffalo Bisons (@BuffaloBisons) May 3, 2017