Blue Jays’ Alek Manoah exits in second inning with right elbow discomfort

Watch as Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Alek Manoah shows signs of discomfort after throwing a sinker to White Sox's Dominic Fletcher before being forced to exit the game in just the second inning with an apparent injury.

CHICAGO — Toronto pitcher Alek Manoah will get an MRI on Thursday after he left the Blue Jays’ 3-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox because of right elbow discomfort.

With two out and a runner on third in the second inning, Manoah was checked on by manager John Schneider and a trainer after throwing a 91.4 mph sinker to Dominic Fletcher for a ball. The big right-hander then departed after a short discussion on the mound.

The 26-year-old Manoah is 1-2 with a 3.70 ERA in five starts this season. He was tagged for six runs, four earned, and five hits in 4 2/3 innings in a 6-2 loss at Detroit on Friday night.

“Felt it after my start in Detroit and tried to do everything I can with the training staff through the week,” Manoah said Wednesday night. “Threw a bullpen a couple days ago, kind of felt fine. I felt like I was able to go out there and compete and give the team a chance, and just wasn’t able to.”

Manoah said he felt like he was “guarding it” into the second.

“It mostly bothers me when I extend,” he said, “so I think mentally when I told myself don’t think about it, I didn’t guard it and I kind of just got more extension than I was the previous pitches.

“Yeah, it kind of just felt really pinchy. At that point, like mentally, I was just like do I keep grinding through this and maybe make it worse or just hand the ball to somebody else.”

Manoah was examined by a White Sox doctor Wednesday night. He began the season on the 15-day injured list because of shoulder inflammation.

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“He was a little cranky after the start in Detroit,” Schneider said, “and had some treatment in between and threw a good side here and was good to go. So I think just trying to be a little bit cautious there, too. And (velocity) was down a little bit in that second inning.”

Manoah was a breakout star for Toronto in 2022, going 16-7 with a 2.24 ERA in 31 starts. He made the AL All-Star team and finished third in AL Cy Young Award voting.

But he struggled last year, going 3-9 with a 5.87 ERA in 19 starts. He was optioned to the minors twice.

“God has put me in this position. He’s really helped me get through some tough things,” Manoah said. “I trust that he’ll continue to help me through whatever comes up next.”

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