Eduardo Rodriguez exited his start against the New York Yankees in the middle of the second inning with what was later described by the team as migraine symptoms.
“He was having trouble concentrating,” Cora said postgame on Zoom. “I saw the first inning, he was very locked in, very serious. I saw him in the dugout … he’s usually very talkative, walking around the dugout, and he was in the corner not talking to people, and then that happened. Hopefully this is something that we can contain, hopefully he doesn’t miss a start. We’ll see.”
Rodriguez ended the night allowing two hits and a run with a strikeout and a walk through one inning before his exit, which came after Brett Gardner launched a RBI double that put the Yankees up 1-0.
The pitcher didn’t appear to be in pain when he exited, and the sudden departure raised worry about whether the incident was related to his bout with myocarditis — an inflammation of the heart muscle — that stemmed from a battle with COVID-19 last year.
“The way Christian (Vázquez) reacted, I was like ‘There’s something going on,'” Cora said. “I thought it was an injury. Went out there, talked to him, and he was telling me how he felt, what was going on. (I said) just take a deep breath, we’ll take you out of the game. That’s what we do. You’ve got to take care of players. That’s the most important thing. Now we’ve just got to see how he reacts tonight, how he feels tomorrow and we’ll go from there. If he has to miss a start he misses it. This guy didn’t pitch last year with a heart problem, so we’ve got to be very careful with him.”
The Red Sox bullpen came through to keep the game competitive in the absence of Rodriguez, with a stellar performance from Phillips Valdez who was called up from Triple-A Worcester earlier in the day. Rafael Devers was the hero offensively with two home runs to seal the win.
Even if Rodriguez misses time, the Red Sox should be able to manage considering they’re currently using a six-man rotation amid the return of Tanner Houck.