CONNOR SEABOLD

Red Sox pitching prospect Connor Seabold has been placed on the injured list with right elbow inflammation, the WooSox announced Monday. Worcester starts its inaugural season Tuesday in Worcester and released its Opening Day roster Monday afternoon.

Seabold, who is ranked by MLB.com as the No. 14 prospect in the system and is considered close to be major-league ready, was placed on the IL for precautionary reasons, Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom said via text.

“Connor is dealing with some minor elbow soreness,” Bloom said. “It’s a long season and so we’d rather address this now rather than try to push through it. He’s on a gradual progression back to full strength.”

Seabold, 25, was acquired along with Nick Pivetta in the August trade that sent Brandon Workman and Heath Hembree to the Phillies. Seabold was expected to be part of Worcester’s Opening Day rotation but instead will have his entry into game action delayed; Tanner Houck, Daniel Gossett, Stephen Gonsalves, Kyle Hart, and Raynel Espinal will start the year as Worcester’s starting five.

Seabold is the second major Red Sox rotation prospect to deal with an arm injury this season. Bryan Mata, who entered the year as the consensus top pitching prospect in the system, underwent Tommy John surgery in mid-April.

On April 19, Seabold tossed six scoreless innings in an intrasquad game at Polar Park, striking out five batters while throwing 86 pitches. After the outing, he said he was pleased with the development of his slider,

“I really like my slider right now,” Seabold added. “I think I get in a habit of using it too much and that’s where the hard contact comes from. But it’s very versatile. I feel like I can flip it in for a get-me-over strike. I can use it as a strikeout pitch. I can backdoor it. It’s a good pitch for me when I’m behind in the count. I really like my slider. I think my slider doesn’t get enough love if I’m being completely honest. But that’s just me.”

THE RED SOX made a minor move Monday afternoon, claiming reliever Brandon Brennan from the Mariners and optioning him to Triple-A Worcester. To make room for Brennan on the 40-man roster, the Red Sox placed reliever Ryan Brasier (left calf strain) on the 60-day injured list.

Brennan, who turns 30 in July, has appeared in the majors for the Mariners in each of the last two seasons, posting a 4.45 ERA and striking out 54 batters in 54 2/3 relief innings. A former fourth-round pick of the White Sox in 2018, Brennan joined the Mariners via the 2018 Rule 5 draft and then spent the entire 2019 season in the majors, demonstrating intriguing swing-and-miss stuff while relying on a changeup that is considered well above average. In 2020, he was limited to just five appearances due to an oblique strain.

Brennan was at the Mariners’ alternate training site to start the season and will provide bullpen depth for the Red Sox at Worcester. He’ll join Eduard Bazardo and Colten Brewer as Triple-A options on the 40-man roster and could be promoted if a big-leaguer struggles or suffers an injury.

Brasier has dealt with two significant injured since the end of last season, as he fractured his pinky finger during an off-season workout and then strained his calf during a “B” game during the last week of spring training. Pitching coach Dave Bush said recently that Brasier had started a throwing program but noted he was still a ways away from joining the Red Sox. He won’t be eligible to be activated until May 28 after originally being placed on the IL on March 29.

“He still has a little ways to go,” Bush said on April 25. “He’s in Florida. He is throwing. I don’t believe he’s throwing in any game situations yet, but he is throwing and working back physically. I don’t know exactly what he’s doing today. But he has been starting a limited running program and he’s been throwing quite a bit. So I’m hoping he gets back on the mound soon and then finishes up his buildup. I don’t have a finish date for him quite yet but he’s on the right path.”


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