Alex Wood, who has been on the injured list since spring training, pitched live batting practice to teammates Kyle Farmer and Phillip Ervin prior to the game in Milwaukee on Saturday afternoon. He threw 42 pitches, simulating 2 innings of work and the left-handed starter felt good after.
Given that he’s missed time with back issues, it’s the next day that’s always a concern. Earlier in the spring a side-session had gone well, but things weren’t so good the next day and he was shut back down. But, if Alex Wood is feeling fine after Saturday’s session, he’s expected to begin a rehab assignment.
?@Reds? Alex Wood Live b.p. At Miller Park. pic.twitter.com/Cjf1b7uupp
— Jeff Piecoro (@JeffPiecoro) June 22, 2019
During the Reds game they were talking about the session and the rehab stint for Alex Wood and noted that he would likely go out and need at least 3-4 starts before he’d be ready to get back to the Major Leagues. If he’s throwing 42 pitches right now, that’s probably what he’ll be at in his first outing. Jumping from there to 60 pitches, then 80, then 100 sounds like a logical progression. There’s still a lot of time between today and when the left-hander would be ready to pitch in the Majors, even if things went perfectly between now and then. On the quickest of timelines you are still looking at 3.5 weeks before he’s going to be ready. A more realistic timeline is probably closer to a month.
This is good news. Just another step, but they all must be made. The Reds have been fortunate with no injuries to any starters, and only minor issues for the bullpen. It’s very likely they’ll need Alex Wood, and quite possible he’ll be an upgrade over Mahle or Disco when he’s ready. Thanks for the update Doug.