According to Jim Leyland it is “highly unlikely” that Bonderman will be available to start the season. While Bonderman isn’t feeling pain at this point, his arm strength (or lack thereof) has his fastball sitting in the high 80′s instead of the low to mid 90′s.
They are clearly playing things by ear at this point, but it does bolster Miner’s and Porcello’s chances of making a start. If it is Miner that gets the nod, that also means a bullpen position may be temporarily open.
Hopefully this situation resolves itself fairly quickly. I view Jeremy Bonderman as one of the keys to the season. If he can’t get back to normal, thoughts of an 85 win season become harder to envision.