CINCINNATI -- Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey's recovery and rehabilitation from September surgery that repaired a torn flexor mass tendon near his right elbow had been a smooth process. Nothing indicated that progress was coming to a halt until the news came Monday that Bailey went on the 15-day disabled list with a right elbow ligament sprain.
The injury is a big blow to a rotation that hoped to have Bailey back at full strength this season.
"He certainly won't be pitching here in the near future," Reds manager Bryan Price said following a 9-6 Reds win over the Brewers on Monday night.
Bailey underwent an MRI exam on a Monday afternoon when he was scheduled to have a side bullpen session.
"I think we have to continue to get our group together and see what the best option is for Homer and the ballclub to make sure his long-term health isn't compromised," Price said. "It's messy, and it's unbelievably unfortunate, not only for him as an individual but for our ballclub, because he's a really big piece to what we do here."
The DL stint is retroactive to Friday. Reliever Carlos Contreras was recalled from Triple-A Louisville to take Bailey's spot on the roster. The Reds will have to name a starting pitcher to take Bailey's turn on Thursday vs. the Braves at Turner Field.
In Louisville, Raisel Iglesias has a 3.86 ERA but last pitched 4 1/3 innings on Sunday. He also started one game in the big leagues on April 11 vs. the Cardinals. Prospect Michael Lorenzen, who has a 2.84 ERA through three starts, is scheduled for Wednesday. Jon Moscot has a 1.54 ERA in two starts and is currently slated to pitch on Tuesday. Lorenzen and Moscot are not currently on the 40-man roster.
"[We're] trying to figure out who the best guy is for that and who's ready to pitch," Price said.
Bailey, 28, was 0-1 with a 5.56 ERA in his two starts after his activation from the disabled list on April 18. Prior to that, he had no setbacks as he resumed a throwing program and pitched in Minor League games. He is in the second year of a six-year, $105 million contract.
In his season debut at St. Louis, Bailey allowed five earned runs and nine hits over 5 2/3 innings. On Thursday vs. the Brewers in a no-decision, he pitched 5 2/3 innings and gave up two earned runs and seven hits.
After Saturday's rainout, Price adjusted his rotation and moved Bailey from Wednesday to Thursday so he could get extra rest. At the time, Price said, there were no red flags Bailey was having trouble. Bailey played catch on Sunday and reported no problems.
"He had what you would consider typical stiffness and soreness postgame throwing in both of his starts," Price said. "That's consistent with a guy coming back from an elbow injury and just consistent with a guy that's perfectly healthy. He'll have some tenderness in his elbow. We just didn't anticipate that it would eventually lead to problems that would shut him down."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.