DeSclafani exits rehab with forearm discomfort

DeSclafani exits rehab with forearm discomfort

PITTSBURGH -- While the Reds were ending their road trip on a down note Thursday with a 6-0 loss to the Pirates, there was even more troubling developments with a pitcher not actually at PNC Park.

Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani was pulled from his rehab assignment start at Class A Dayton with right forearm discomfort. He will be examined on Friday in Cincinnati by team medical director Dr. Tim Kremchek. DeSclafani recorded only one out in the first inning and gave up eight earned runs and eight hits, including three home runs, vs. Great Lakes.

"Twenty-three pitches in the first inning, felt some soreness and they took him out," Reds manager Bryan Price said after receiving the report.

DeSclafani has been out since mid-March, when he was diagnosed with an ulnar collateral ligament sprain in his right elbow. The prognosis was to have him shut down from throwing and get better via rehabilitation. However, the injury was slower to heal than initially expected according to an updated MRI exam, and DeSclafani wasn't cleared to start throwing until mid-May.

There seemed to be light at the end of the tunnel for DeSclafani once he began a rehab assignment on July 23. He threw 2 1/3 innings for the AZL Reds and followed with four scoreless innings, one hit and six strikeouts for Dayton on Saturday.

The plan was to have DeSclafani get into the 70-75 pitch range over five innings on Thursday.

DeSclafani made 31 starts with 184 2/3 innings in 2015 but has been sidetracked by injuries the past two seasons. In 2016, a strained left oblique delayed his debut until June. He posted a 9-5 record and 3.28 ERA with 123 1/3 innings and one complete game in his 20 starts and headed into this season expected to lead a young rotation.

Price and the club are left to hope that DeSclafani gets good news from Kremchek and his latest MRI exam on Friday.

"It's a tough blow because if you're going in to have an MRI because your elbow is sore, I don't imagine that he will be making his next start on the eighth, would be my guess," Price said. "My hopes are that they'll go, 'Hey, he's got some inflammation and we'll give him a few days off and we'll get him back on a throwing program.' That's an optimist's look at it. I hope that's how it ends up going."

Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.