Throughout the offseason, the Phillies had some injury concerns about starting pitcher Aaron Nola.  Those concerns were mostly related to an elbow that bothered Nola down the stretch in 2016.   Unfortunately the injury bug has hit Nola anyway.  The Phillies announced Monday afternoon that Nola will be placed on the 10-day disabled list with a back strain.

The move is retroactive to April 21, when Nola last pitched.  Should the injury be minor, the Phillies could activate Nola on May 1.

In the club release, Phillies general manager Matt Klentak suggested the stay would be minimal:

 

"Aaron experienced soreness in his lower back during his start on Thursday (against the Mets)," GM Matt Klentak said in a statement. "After receiving treatment over the last few days, the symptoms improved, but he still felt some tightness during his side session yesterday. Our hope and expectation is that this will not be a lengthy DL placement and that Aaron will miss only one or two starts.

The new 10-day disabled list is very helpful in making a starting pitcher's missed time as minimal as possible.

In Nola's absence, the Phillies will now have to turn to their Triple-A depth.  The Phillies had hoped Clay Buchholz would provide such depth, but Buchholz is currently on the 60-day disabled list and his season likely over.   The two strongest candidates are Ben Lively, who spent a few days with the Phillies, or Nick Pivetta, who is pitching very well for the Phillies.

With Monday's off day, the Phillies do not need a starter in Nola's spot until Thursday against Miami.   Pivetta last pitched on the 20th, which means he could assume Nola's regular turn on Wednesday.  Pivetta is 3-0 with a 0.95 earned run average for the IronPigs.