Breslow made his spring training debut Tuesday in the Boston Red Sox’s 1-0 win over Boston College. The left-hander was pleased with his outing, as it was another reminder of just how good he feels physically.
“The opportunity to get out there and throw an inning is the final component to turning the page on last year,” Breslow said Wednesday, according to MLB.com. “Knowing that I’m healthy and I feel good, I can just worry about what I need to do. This is as good as my arm has felt in 10 years.”
Breslow hadn’t pitched in a spring training game since 2012. He dealt with left shoulder tendinitis in 2013 and then a strained left shoulder in 2014. Both injuries set Breslow back in his preparation, and last season ended up being the worst of his nine-year career.
The Red Sox re-signed Breslow this offseason, though, despite his 5.96 ERA and 1.86 WHIP of a year ago. The feeling was that his struggles were an aberration, as he’s typically been a very reliable reliever. Breslow was a key cog in Boston’s bullpen during the team’s march to a World Series title in 2013.
“Compared to the last two years, it’s like night and day,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said. “When you compare the last two years, he’s far ahead of schedule. It’s a step in the right direction.”
Breslow posted a 2.27 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP in 124 appearances spanning 123 innings in 2012 and 2013. It’s likely the Red Sox will ask him to pitch meaningful innings again this season despite last season’s hiccup, and it wouldn’t be surprising if he returned to being his usual, effective self. All signs thus far in camp have been encouraging.
“I felt like I put myself into a good position coming into spring training,” Breslow said. “I knew what it would come down to is just throwing and being a regular guy, so getting that first outing under my belt was good. Now I can think about how I can prepare for the season. I’ll be able to go through a normal routine.”
One exhibition game against a college team doesn’t mean much in the grand scheme of things. But for Breslow, it offered one more reason to be optimistic going into 2015.
Thumbnail photo via Mark L. Baer/USA TODAY Sports Images