Rays place RHP Eflin on injured list with back tightness

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — The Tampa Bay Rays placed pitcher Zach Eflin on the 15-day injured list Tuesday after the right-hander reported lower back tightness.

Eflin (2-0, 3.27 ERA) had been scheduled to make his third start on Wednesday night against Boston. Instead, 22-year-old righty Taj Bradley will make his major league debut for the Rays, who were 10-0 going into the second game of the four-game series against the Red Sox.

Eflin, 29, signed a $40 million, three-year contract in the offseason, the largest free-agent deal in franchise history. He went 3-5 in 20 games (13 starts) in 2022, his seventh season with the Philadelphia Phillies.

His placement on the injured list is retroactive to April 8, which makes Eflin eligible to return on April 23.

“I expect it to be minimal,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said of the setback. “We’re trying to stay ahead of it. With where we’re at in the season and how important he is to us, let’s see if we can get it treated and calmed down pretty quickly.”

Eflin is the second member of Tampa Bay’s rotation to go on the IL. Right-hander Tyler Glasnow, who has been out with a left oblique strain, threw 15 pitches on Tuesday, his first pitches off a mound since late February.


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