Ken Giles may or may not start the 2015 season on the disabled list.
A day after his young reliever exited a game with back pain after facing one batter, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. sounded very confident that Giles would be good to go for Monday's season opener at Citizens Bank Park against the Red Sox. Giles has been diagnosed with a mild mid back strain, Amaro said.
"(It's) still kind of day-to-day, but I think he's going to be OK," Amaro said.
OK as in he'll be ready in time for Opening Day?
"I don't think he's going to necessitate a DL. But, again, he's day to day, and we'll probably know more in the next 48 hours," Amaro said.
Giles does have a history of oblique issues. He pitched in just 24 games in 2013.
Amaro was asked why he would possibly risk putting Giles on the field in the next five days.
"I wouldn't risk it, if we think it's a risk. It was described to me as milder than Cody Asche's issue," Amaro said.
Asche missed four straight Grapefruit League games, but was sidelined for just three days total; he played one day in a minor league game.
If Giles doesn't pitch this afternoon in Clearwater against the Braves, he would have a chance to return to the mound in three more games (one more in Clearwater, followed by two exhibition games in Philadelphia) in the next four days, before the season opener on Monday.
"I'd assume we'll try to get him into a game over the next several days," Amaro said. "And, if not, at least get him off the mound. It doesn't necessarily have to be in a game, but probably definitely have to get him off the mound."