TRENTON – The Thunder will be without left-handed pitcher Justus Sheffield for an indefinite amount of time after an MRI on Thursday morning revealed he has a strained right oblique muscle.
“The MRI showed that it was a decent strain too,” said Thunder Manager Bobby Mitchell. “So, it’s really disappointing for us and for him. He’ll be out for a while.
“They’re going to be real careful with him obviously and err on the side of caution.”
Sheffield – who was placed on the seven-day disabled list Thursday — started for Trenton on Wednesday night but was pulled after recording the first out of the fifth inning. Sheffield appeared to be in some discomfort at the time, as he grimaced and tried to stretch out his right side.
After Wednesday’s game, Mitchell told the media that Sheffield thought it was just a cramp but that they would get it looked at just in case.
In 16 starts with the Thunder this season Sheffield was 7-5 with a 3.09 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP. In 90 1/3 innings pitched, he recorded 79 strikeouts.
It is unclear who will replace Sheffield on Trenton’s roster.
“I don’t know who will jump into Sheffield’s spot yet,” Mitchell said. “I think (Yefry) Ramirez will just move up a day because of the All-Star break and we’ll see what happens after he pitches.
“It will be tough shoes to fill.”