Drew Pomeranz just wanted to play things safe.
That was the message the Boston Red Sox pitcher conveyed after he exited his first start of spring training with some forearm soreness.
Pomeranz saw just four batters in Friday’s win over the St. Louis Cardinals, retiring all of them. But after that fourth batter, he elected to depart the game with just 1 1/3 innings under his belt due to what the team described as “left forearm soreness.”
But when addressing the early departure, the 29-year-old indicated that it was far more precautionary than anything.
“It seems fine,” Pomeranz said, via The Boston Globe. “It was just more a case of being safe. I’m not too worried about it. I feel fine now.
“I felt pretty good in the first inning. I just felt a little tightness going out there in the second inning. Just something I didn’t feel like I should be pushing in my first outing.”
Not a bad idea.
This is far from the first time Pomeranz has dealt with some level of discomfort. During March of last spring training, he exited a game due to tricep tightness, and he did so again in May with the same ailment. Nevertheless, that didn’t impede him too much from making 32 appearances — all starts — last season while logging 173.2 innings on the mound en route to a 17-6 record.
The lefty noted the trainers agreed with his sentiment that it wasn’t a huge deal and that it will be re-evaluated Saturday.
“I came in here and the trainers checked it out and it seemed fine,” said Pomeranz. “Nothing like I had before; that’s why I’m not worried about it. I threw a few pitches to the first hitter and I just said there’s no point and I might as well figure out what’s going on and shut it down.
“I was feeling good all offseason and spring training,” he added. “No issues. Obviously, here in my first outing, maybe something got tight just getting amped up for this game.
“I was very excited to have a healthy outlook coming into spring training, so I just don’t want to push it.”
While this all might end up being absolutely nothing, like Pomeranz is suggesting, it’s obviously still a smart play to not try and push himself too far in a March 2 spring training outing.