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Rays lose Price to injury as Red Sox roll, 9-2

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Published:   |   Updated: May 16, 2013 at 09:10 AM
ST. PETERSBURG -

David Price walked off the mound in the top of the third inning Wednesday with a left triceps strain, the latest thing to go wrong this season for the reigning American League Cy Young Award winner.

Price underwent an MRI, which didn't show anything more than the strain, according to Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon.

“From what I'm told there's nothing really hot on the MRI,” Maddon said after the Rays 9-2 loss to the Boston Red Sox in front of 15,767 at Tropicana Field, a loss that snapped the Rays six-game winning streak.

Price said he felt the triceps tighten during the third inning. He motioned to the dugout for pitching coach Jim Hickey. Head athletics trainer Ron Porterfield and Maddon quickly headed for the mound.

It didn't take long for Price to remove himself from the game.

“It felt like tightness not excruciating pain,” Price said. “I just never felt anything like that before.”

Maddon said it is “unlikely” Price makes his next scheduled start Monday against the Blue Jays in Toronto.

When asked if he's ruling himself out of that game, Price said, “I'm not.

Should Price head to the disabled list, the Rays could recall right-hander Jake Odorizzi from Triple A Durham since Odorizzi is pitching on the same schedule as Price. Chris Archer, who made four starts for the Rays last season, is another option.

“Actually we're kind of fortunate we think with the whole thing,” Maddon said. “We'll know more (today) and well have more announcements (today) regarding what we're going to do.”

Price has not pitched close to his 2012 standard when he became the first pitcher in franchise history to win 20 games, led the American League with a 2.56 Earned Run Average and won the American League Cy Young Award.

Price entered Wednesday's game 1-3 in eight starts with a 4.78 ERA. The Rays lost six of those games.

On May 15, 2012 Price was 6-2.

He is now 1-4 with a 5.24 ERA after being charged with four runs in his 2 1/3 innings.

“I've never been on the disabled list before,” Price said. “And that's something I take pride in, being available every fifth day and being out there for my team. I don't know how this is looking right now.”

Toronto pitcher Josh Johnson suffered a triceps injury and hasn't pitched since April 21, so Price could be looking at missing more than one start.

“The biggest thing is how I feel (today),” he said. “I hope to come in and play catch (today). Hopefully I'll come in and play catch. That's the biggest thing on my mind right now.”

The injury was the latest entry in what has been a rough start to the 2013 season for Price.

He allowed eight hits on 10 runs in five innings during his second start of the season, a 13-0 loss to the Cleveland Indians.

He had a much publicized run in with home plate umpire Tom Hallion in Chicago that led to both sides calling each other liars and led to Price being fined $1,000 for posts he made on Twitter concerning Hallion.

His fastball velocity has been down a few miles per hour, which has lessened the effectiveness of his off-speed and breaking pitches.

He's faced questions about his contract for next season and if trying to live up to the hype of being the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner has led to his subpar start.

On Tuesday, Price revealed that he underwent an allergy test that morning. He was pricked 56 times – half of them on his right arm, half on his left arm. Maddon said he didn't think that test factored into this injury, insisting Price looked pretty good during the first two innings.

Price said he's had triceps tightness “four or five” times before.

“It's something I gotta take care of,” he said. “I can't just go out there because I'm not just putting my neck on the line. I'm part of this team, and I want to be there in August or September or when we're playing in the playoffs. I've never (taken myself out of a game). I wouldn't do it if I didn't think it was something that was serious.”

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Twitter: @RMooneyTBO

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