Price not concerned with lower back tightness
Left-hander notches American League-leading 11th win, expects to make next start
ST. PETERSBURG -- Despite being pulled before the eighth inning because of lower back tightness, Rays left-hander David Price, who notched his American League-leading 11th win Friday, said he'll be ready in time for his next start.
"I'll be pitching in five days," he said definitively.
The injury happened in the seventh inning of Tampa Bay's 4-2 victory over Detroit when Price forced slugger Prince Fielder to ground out to short. He stayed in to face Delmon Young, who popped out to first to end the inning.
"I just felt it after the fastball to Fielder," Price said. "It just tightened up on me a little bit. ... It was just something to be careful with."
After the Rays took their turn at the plate, manager Joe Maddon made the decision to pull Price as he was warming up to start the eighth.
"Whenever any starting pitcher tells me something about their back not feeling right, he's out of the game," Maddon said.
To that point, Price was dominating the Tigers' lineup, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk with seven strikeouts in his seven innings. The defense was strong for Price and ended three innings with double plays.
"We made some great plays," Price said. "[Brooks] Conrad over at third and double plays by Elliot [Johnson] and them -- we played good defense tonight and it showed."
He added that he felt he could have kept going if needed.
"We had a two-run lead and our bullpen has been very, very good all year, so I had no problem handing that over," Price said.
Greg Zeck is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.