Home BASEBALL Trevor Story returns to Red Sox lineup after missing team's first 112...

Trevor Story returns to Red Sox lineup after missing team’s first 112 games with serious elbow injury

For the first time this season, the Boston Red Sox have an actual shortstop playing shortstop. Boston activated All-Star shortstop Trevor Story from the injured list, and he made his season debut in Tuesday’s loss to the Kansas City Royals (KC 9, BOS 3). Story missed the team’s first 112 games with a serious elbow injury.

Story, 30, had a rough season debut, going 0 for 4 with three strikeouts against righty Brady Singer and lefty Tucker Davidson. He took nine swings and misses with six of them, suggesting Story still has some rust to shake off. That’s understandable, given the long layoff. He did make a very nice lunging play at shortstop to take an infield hit away from the speedy Bobby Witt Jr., however.

In January, the Red Sox announced Story had undergone an “internal bracing procedure” to his ulnar collateral ligament. If the “UCL” sounds familiar, that’s the torn ligament before players have Tommy John surgery. It’s most serious in pitchers, but a middle infielder undergoing a procedure — even if not full-on TJ — on that ligament was still pretty significant. It was a big enough deal that, at the time, the Red Sox said they weren’t counting on Story coming back during the 2023 season

Story worked his way back, though, and played three rehab games for Double-A Portland and 10 for Triple-A Worcester, hitting .300/.417/.700 with four doubles, four homers, nine RBI and eight runs in his 48 plate appearances. We can consider that his de facto spring training. 

Story signed a six-year, $140 million deal with the Red Sox prior to last season. He suffered through an injury-riddled first season, hitting .238/.303/.434 (100 OPS+) with 22 doubles, 16 homers, 66 RBI, 53 runs, 13 steals and 2.5 WAR in his 94 games. He played second base full-time after having been a two-time All-Star shortstop with the Rockies. There were big concerns with his arm strength from short, hence the move, and he spent time on the IL in 2021 due to elbow inflammation. In his 13 rehab games this year, he played nine at shortstop and four at DH.

Further, the Red Sox had All-Star Xander Bogaerts at shortstop last season and now he’s gone, having signed with the Padres in free agency. The Red Sox haven’t firmed up shortstop all year. Enrique Hernández has played there most (54 starts), but he’s been traded to the Dodgers. The coast is clear for Story to play everyday at shortstop now for the Red Sox. 

Tuesday’s loss drops the Red Sox to 58-55 on the season. They are in fourth place in the AL East and five games back of the third wild-card spot.



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