Anthony DeSclafani hasn’t felt like much of a baseball player in the first 40 games of the season. He hasn’t thrown a ball since spring training because of a sprained ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow.
It has been a long wait for the starting pitcher who was expected to be the Reds’ ace, but he got good news Friday when he was examined by Dr. Tim Kremchek.
“I’m cleared to throw,” DeSclafani said. “We’re going to get a plan together today and go over it tonight or tomorrow and start the throwing process. It’s definitely good.”
DeSclafani will throw Sunday. That will be the first step. It’s still a long road back. There has been no timetable set for his return.
“Sunday will be a test drive down the block,” manager Bryan Price said. “We’ll see if we can get him outside the neighborhood in the next couple of days.”
DeSclafani made his season debut June 10 last season. A strained left oblique muscle kept him on the disabled list in the first two months of the season.
“Hopefully, last year and this year are the last time I’ll have to deal with anything,” DeSclafani said. “I don’t know. I can’t read the future, but I’m going to do everything I can to stay injury free and take care of my body the best I can.”
More injury news: Brandon Finnegan threw off flat ground Friday, Price said, and felt great. He should be able to pitch off a mound in “relatively short order.” He has been on the disabled list since April 16 with a shoulder injury.
Homer Bailey “has been throwing great,” Price said, in bullpen sessions and should start throwing live batting practice early next week.
Mesoraco update: Catcher Devin Mesoraco was not in the lineup Friday for the opener of a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies at Great American Ball Park. He didn’t play in the three games against the Chicago Cubs earlier in the week because of a hamstring injury.
Mesoraco could return to action Saturday, Price said. He felt good going through a workout Friday.
“Typically what we try to do is get guys feeling like they’re 100 percent and then give them one more day,” Price said, “especially when it involves an injury like a hamstring.”
Cold bats: Eugenio Suarez hit .194 (6-for-31) on the seven-game road trip. Adam Duvall hit .207 (6-for-29). Scott Schebler hit .179 (5-for-28).
History lesson: The Reds’ 19-21 record through 40 games puts them four wins ahead of last season’s pace. In the last 10 seasons, their best record through 40 games was 24-16 in 2013. They have been over .500 five times during that span.
Looking ahead: Tim Adleman (2-2, 5.27) starts a 4:10 p.m. Saturday game against the Rockies’ Antonio Senzatela (6-1, 3.31). The first 20,000 fans receive an Adam Duvall bobblehead.
Bronson Arroyo (3-3, 6.31) starts a 1:10 p.m. Sunday game against the Rockies’ Kyle Freeland (4-2, 3.13).
Senzatela and Freeland are rookies. They rank ninth and 10th in the National League in ERA.