Red Sox’s Alex Cora Assures Garrett Whitlock Injury Not ‘That Serious’

'It doesn't matter who you lose now, it's a big hit anyway'

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The Boston Red Sox on Tuesday placed pitcher Garrett Whitlock on the 10-day injured list.

The Rule 5 reliever left Boston’s 8-6 win over the Baltimore Orioles after teammate Rafael Devers noticed something a bit off with his velocity. After one full inning of work, Whitlock came back out for more, but walked the first batter he faced and then came out of the game.

The team referred to the ailment as “right pectoral tightness.”

“We don’t feel it’s that serious but obviously he’s not going to be ready in the upcoming days and it’s going to be actually closer to 10 days,” manager Alex Cora said Tuesday before Boston’s series opener against the New York Mets.

Cora still expects Whitlock to return before the end of the regular season. Hopefully at that point it’s worth it for him to come back, as the Red Sox try to create separation for an American League Wild Card spot.

“It doesn’t matter who you lose now, it’s a big hit anyway — it doesn’t matter,” Cora said. “Whoever you lose on the roster now is a big one. It can be your star player or the utility guy, you don’t want to lose guys. So somebody else has to step up, but I think we’ve done a good job throughout the season, especially the last 15-20 days to do that. Our next guy has to step up and do a job.”

Whitlock’s shoes will be big to fill, though.

He’s been one of their most reliable arms out of the bullpen, used for extended relief and in high-leverage situations. Whitlock has even make a case for himself as the American League’s Rookie of the Year.

Whitlock owns a 1.99 ERA with 79 strikeouts in 72 1/3 innings.

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