The Phillies pulled starter Cole Irvin from his Triple-A starter after just three innings on Wednesday. The move suggested something was up, but there was no roster move on Wednesday. Today that move became clear: starter Zach Eflin is headed to the 10-day Injured List.
The Phillies announced that Eflin was diagnosed with "mid-back tightness" as he was placed on the Injured List. The move was backdated to May 28. Eflin last pitched on May 26 and lasted just three and two-thirds innings, allowing three earned runs. Eflin did not seem like the pitcher who had a very strong string of games that included two complete games.
As for Irvin, he allowed just one hit and no runs in three inning at Triple-A since being optioned back to Lehigh Valley. Irvin was 2-1 with a 5.60 earned run average in three starts for the Phillies before returning to Triple-A. Irvin will start tomorrow in Los Angeles over Vince Velasquez, who was relegated to the bullpen recently.
There is no timetable mentioned for Eflin to return, but he will be eligible to come back from the Injured List on June 7. Irvin's start lines up with a day off on June 6, so conceivably Eflin could miss a single start if the issue is minor. In the meantime, it's an opportunity for Irvin to show what he can do.
If the Phillies look to make a trade, the Blue Jays reportedly could be aggressive in dealing pitchers Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez, according to Jayson Stark of the Athletic. Dallas Keuchel remains a free agent and may be more attractive after this upcoming week's draft as the club signing Keuchel will not have to surrender a draft pick.