Chicago White Sox reliever Jesse Crain will not be activated from the disabled list before next week's trade deadline after suffering a setback while rehabbing a right shoulder strain that has kept him sidelined since July 3rd. Crain had a bullpen session scheduled for Thursday, but it was cancelled once the team realized that he was not far enough along in his rehab process. Pitching coach Don Cooper explained the situation to Scott Merkin of MLB.com.
Cooper on Crain: "I guess I would call it a slight setback because we had a sideline the other day and we were hoping to climb from there ..— Scott Merkin (@scottmerkin) July 25, 2013
... and he just wasn’t feeling up to it."— Scott Merkin (@scottmerkin) July 25, 2013
Merkin notes that Crain is unlikely to appear in a major league game before the trade deadline, meaning that a deal involving the coveted All-Star is now considered highly unlikely. The Red Sox, Rockies, Cardinals, Reds, Dodgers and Braves are among the teams that have shown consistent interest in the 32-year old, but are unlikely to take a risk by giving up prospects for an injured player. A waiver-wire deal once Crain proves his health in August is possible, but much more difficult for clubs to maneuver.
While the setback does not completely take the possibility of a Crain deal off the table, it decreases the chances significantly. He was one of the top bullpen arms available on the trade market, so teams will have to look elsewhere in their efforts to bolster bullpens for the stretch run.