Seriously though this bites, Christian Vazqeuz went from being slated as the Opening Day starter last season straight back to the minors where he will continue to rebuild his arm strength and hope for a callup.
“Would not be ready for Opening Day, no,” said John Farrell when asked about Vazquez.
“We’ll look to stretch out the number of innings inside of a given game,” Farrell said. “It could be two sevens coming up with the thought of soon he could a full nine innings.”
Honestly, it’s probably for the best.
Vazquez is just beginning to get his legs under him, so why rush him and risk injury which, at this point, would likely end his career? It’s not so much a question of skill, as it is health and durability. For now the Sox will go with Blake Swihart as the starter, with Ryan Hanigan and Sandy Leon as backups should he need a day off. With Vazquez patiently waiting in the wings, it could make for an interesting scenario when he is finally healthy as the Sox will have a surplus on their hands and plenty of teams willing to bite.
Farrell had high praise for Vazquez, just to remind us how good he really is and how well the Sox think of him.
“Each of our catchers have attributes of their own, and he has a knack for the intangible, and that is getting the most out of a guy on the mound, whether it’s a given start or a reliever. What we’ve seen is his ability to go out inside of innings and not only have direct conversations, but a feel for swings. I think the game-calling to a certain extent reflects that. His receiving and the way he presents pitches to the umpires, it’s probably as good as you’re going to find on the big league level. He’s an exceptional defensive catcher. In addition to that, the leadership with pitchers on the mound is very good.”
All the best to Vazauez down in AAA, keep on killing it and come back up when you are ready!