On Tuesday, Bronson Arroyo did not make his scheduled start for the Arizona Diamondbacks because of a back issue. We now find out that he has a slightly bulging disk and it is the same disk that gave him problems three years ago. He has since received an epidural and will now be on the shelf from seven to ten days. It gives Randall Delgado a couple of chances to get some more work as a starter before his eventual move into the bullpen.
The talk we hear is that how this disk is no big deal, that it is not herniated and how tough and durable Arroyo is. Fine. I won’t immediately react as if this is some catastrophic event. However, I am also not going to pretend this isn’t a little bit of a red flag. This is now 2014 and Arroyo is now 37 instead of 34. I don’t think it is a big deal at all if we show some concern. It’s fair to speculate if the back can hold up over 30-plus starts. It’s fair to wonder if Arroyo begins the season the disabled list. Two episodes with the same disk in the back is not something to just brush off as if it was a bruised knuckle on the non-throwing hand. I guess it is safe to say Arroyo will not be making the trip to Australia.
The best attitude for all of us to take is this: we think Bronson Arroyo will be fine but as a precaution, he will get the proper amount of rest, even if it upsets the player. No, this isn’t a terrible setback. But to act as though this is a common cold is also the wrong attitude to take.