BOSTON -- Matt Joyce has had what manager Joe Maddon considers a "setback" in the rehab for his right elbow strain as the outfielder, who many figured would be starting in right field this season, was sent back to St. Petersburg from Triple-A Durham.
"[We] just had to pull him back and be a little more conservative with the rehab," Maddon said. "So they brought him back to St. Pete to kind of modify it a bit or back off. So of course he's behind schedule with getting his arm well. [We] just wanted to get him back there and supervise it more closely from home."
Joyce has played in five games for the Bulls, collecting two hits in 16 at-bats (a .125 batting average) with one RBI, but he has only been the team's designated hitter and has not been able to play the outfield.
"He was throwing, playing catch like he had been, but it was not responding to the point where he felt good about it going into the game," Maddon said. "Ronnie [Porterfield, Rays head athletic trainer] just thinks it's a matter of time and it's just going to take more time, and he wanted to be more involved in the rehab. It was getting so slowly better, he just could not throw at a distance. He could not throw in a game. And until he can, we did not want to do anything about it but get him well. Because we don't want to put him in the outfield."