Thursday, August 22, 2013

Jonathan Broxton's season is likely over

Jonathan Broxton and the Reds were dealt a disappointing setback on Thursday as it was announced that the right-hander was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a flexor mass strain in his pitching forearm. Furthermore, the injury will require a surgical procedure, which likely means Broxton has thrown his last pitch of the 2013 season.

The news had to be especially tough for Broxton to fathom as he had just returned from the disabled list less than two weeks ago on Aug. 9. The ailment is similar to the one that had previously caused him to miss two months of the season.

Broxton sustained the injury while pitching in the eighth inning of Wednesday's victory over the Diamondbacks. Broxton allowed a home run to Gerardo Parra, followed by a four-pitch walk to Wil Nieves, before skipper Dusty Baker, pitching coach Bryan Price, and trainer Paul Lessard went out to the mound to check on the big fellow. Their trip to see the reliever proved to be a troublesome one.

In a post-game interview, Broxton likened the pain to "a knife driving into his right forearm."

Most people close to the situation are proclaiming that Broxton has little chance to return to the mound this season. However, Baker didn't seem ready to throw in the towel just yet on Broxton.

“They don’t know until they get in there and see what’s wrong,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “I’d just be guessing right now until the doctors get in there.”

Broxton was 2-2 with a 4.11 ERA and 1.27 WHIP in 34 appearances spanning 30.2 innings this year. He also sported a .237 BAA and recorded 12 holds serving as the setup man for Aroldis Chapman.

The Reds called up RHP Nick Christiani from Triple-A Louisville before Thursday's game to fill Broxton's spot in the bullpen. Johnny Cueto was subsequently moved to the 60-day disabled list in order to clear a spot for Christiani on the 40-man roster.

Christiani was 6-5 with a 4.05 ERA in 47 games  for the Bats this season.

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