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Tampa Bay Rays pitching prospect Brent Honeywell Jr. shutdown with forearm soreness

The Rays top pitching prospect will be shutdown for a few days

MLB: Spring Training-Toronto Blue Jays at Tampa Bay Rays Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Brent Honeywell has been reportedly shutdown by the Tampa Bay Rays as he is dealing with some soreness in the forearm area.

Honeywell underwent Tommy John Surgery last spring, and until now, had been ahead on his rehab schedule and was slated to begin rehab games in the very near future. The former Futures’ Game MVP was a favorite to make the Rays Opening Day roster last spring until he went down with the injury. Despite undergoing the surgery, Honeywell was ranked as the Rays 2nd best prospect and 23rd overall in the game.

Prior to his surgery, Honeywell was ready to get outs in the big leagues. He has a five-pitch mix, with all his pitches showing average or better potential. He had little trouble mixing in two breaking balls, a changeup and a screwball while blowing hitters away with a 93-95 mph fastball that touched 99 mph. Honeywell’s plus fastball sets up a plus changeup he uses to both baffle hitters and induce them to chase out of the strike zone. But he’s just as comfortable getting ahead with an average curveball that sets up an above-average, mid-80s slider with the power and late break to be a swing-and-miss offering. He could stand to use his 70-grade screwball more often. Honeywell has improved the consistency of his release point to the point where he has above-average control.

The Rays are hopeful it’s just soreness for Honeywell, and Kevin Cash indicated this is pretty common for pitchers on the comeback trail, but there is always cause for concern when a player is shutdown.