Triston Casas shares target date for return from rib injury

Red Sox

Casas has been out since April 20 after suffering a cartilage tear in his rib cage.

Triston Casas suffered a rib injury in April. Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

The countdown for Triston Casas’s return to the Red Sox’ lineup is underway.

Casas is seeking to be back in the lineup by the Red Sox’ series against the Marlins, which begins July 2. The first baseman has also begun swinging the bat again after suffering a rib injury in April, he told The Boston Globe‘s Julian McWilliams.

“I’m not making contact with the ball yet,” Casas said. “The force of the ball is powerful, for sure. So we’re making sure that I come in a couple of days in a row consecutively after swinging without any soreness or any blowback before I start making contact. Then after that everything should progress pretty rapidly.”

Casas added in his comments to McWilliams that he’s taken roughly 30 swings in the days prior to the Red Sox’ win over the Yankees on Saturday.

While Casas is targeting to be back with the team when they make the trip to his native South Florida, Alex Cora isn’t so sure when he’ll be back in the lineup yet. But the Red Sox manager is encouraged by Casas’s progression.

“I haven’t talked to [the medical staff] about Casas but if that’s the case, that’s a good sign,” Cora said. “I know he has this goal in mind of the time we go to Miami. Hopefully, that’s the case. We’ve got to be smart. He needs to be smart. And so far, he has been outstanding with it.”

Casas suffered the rib injury on a swing in a Red Sox win over the Pirates on April 20. He left the game and it was later revealed that he suffered a cartilage tear in his rib cage.

The Red Sox immediately placed Casas on the 60-day injured list, saying they believed he would return at some point this season but weren’t sure when. Casas told’s Ian Browne in May that he was initially targeting a June 21 return as that was the first day he’d be eligible to be taken of the 60-day injured list. With a July 2 target date in mind, that leaves Casas just over two weeks to continue to rehab before hitting the minors for a rehab stint.

Boston’s first base situation hasn’t been too great with Casas out of the lineup. It already released Garrett Cooper, who it traded for after his struggles in the lineup. Cooper hit .171 prior to his release. Dom Smith (.216 batting average) and Bobby Dalbec (.133) have also struggled at the play, though Smith has been a bit better in June with a .846 OPS.

Casas was slashing .244/.344/.513 with six homers and 10 RBIs through 22 games this season when he went down with the rib injury. He had a strong close to the 2023 season, hitting .317 with a 1.034 OPS and 15 homers in the 54 games following the All-Star break.

The good injury news for the Red Sox extended beyond Casas on Saturday. Reliever Chris Martin will pitch an inning for Triple-A Worcester on Sunday after being played on the injured list for anxiety. Utility man Romy Gonzalez will also play in Sunday’s game for the WooSox in his third game of a rehab stint following a hamstring injury. Both are expected to rejoin the team for their upcoming series against the Blue Jays.

Right fielder Wilyer Abreu should be back not long after. Abreu ran the basepaths ahead of Saturday’s game and is expected to take part in a rehab stint with Triple-A Worcester early this week. If all goes well, Abreu should be back in the Red Sox’ lineup for the Red Sox’ series with the Reds next weekend.

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