Litsch to see Dr. Andrews as precaution
Right-hander feels better Saturday after Friday pain
CHICAGO -- Rarely does a pitcher come back with good news if an injury sends him to the office of Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala. The Blue Jays are hoping to have an exception in right-hander Jesse Litsch.
After Litsch experienced tightness in his right forearm and elbow during a routine round of catch on Friday, Toronto booked an appointment for the pitcher to see Dr. Andrews on Monday. Litsch was placed on the 15-day disabled list with the same complaint on April 14 and had been shut down for 10 days.
"It's just precautionary," Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston said.
Gaston said that Litsch felt better on Saturday morning and the pitcher played catch again at U.S. Cellular Field. The discomfort in Litsch's arm flared up again on his last five throws, but Toronto had already decided on Friday night that sending the starter to see Andrews was the proper route to take.
The Jays have been optimistic about Litsch's chances to return to the rotation by the middle of May. Gaston said it's too early to say if that timetable will need to be pushed back.
"We won't know until we check it out," Gaston said. "The good news is that he was feeling it [on Friday] a little bit, but today he felt nothing when he came in. It all might be good -- we're hoping."
Litsch, 24, exited an outing against the Twins on April 13 after facing two batters in the fourth inning. A day later, he was placed on the DL for the first time in his career. In two starts this season, Litsch is 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA, and he has gone 20-19 with a 3.83 ERA in three seasons with Toronto.
The Jays are also currently without left-handed rookie Ricky Romero, who was placed on the 15-day DL on Thursday with a right oblique strain. Romero is scheduled to resume playing catch on Monday in Kansas City, and the club is hopeful that he can return around mid-May as well.
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.