It didn’t end up being the worst-case scenario, but Lucas Giolito’s spring training elbow injury was quite a morale hit for the Red Sox.

Boston expected their newest signing to be an innings eater, but will instead wait a calendar year before seeing Giolito take the mound in a Red Sox uniform. That’s a bummer, not only for the team, but the player.

Giolito was looking forward to being counted on.

“I’d say the biggest mental hurdle is that feeling of letting people down,” Giolito said Thursday, per Sean McAdam of MassLive. “I signed here to throw a lot of innings for this club and it’s very unfortunate that I experienced this injury. I came into camp and everything was really clean. I felt really good, everything looked really good. It was just one of those things. I guess the (Tommy John) only lasted for so long.”

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If there’s a silver lining to this season-ending injury, it’s that it isn’t expected to bleed into 2025. Giolito had an internal bracing procedure, which doesn’t involve drilling into bone or extracting torn ligaments and comes with a much shorter recovery time.

The 29-year-old feels he’s got what it takes to be ready to go next season.

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“I’ve spoken to a number of guys in the clubhouse who’ve gone through Tommy John, internal brace… all those different type of procedures,” Giolito said. “But everyone’s case is a little individualized, right? Knowing myself, I’ve always been able to heal well, (including some) little things that I’ve had the last two years.

“Obviously, this is recovering from a surgery, but I’m very confident that if I stick with the protocol, the training and medical staff here is excellent. They’re going to do everything in their power to get me back strong. So, yeah, just stay on that track.”

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The Red Sox will look toward returning pitchers to help make up for Giolito’s injury, with a freshly extended Brayan Bello and Nick Pivetta competing to start on Opening Day.

Featured image via Kamil Krzaczynski/USA TODAY Sports Images