“This is the first of many. Now I have to work even harder because I’m the best pitcher in the American League.”
— Felix Hernandez, apparently believing that the Cy Young Award is taken away from its current holder head-to-head style, as though this were professional wrestling.
I kid King Felix. He was quite emotional and genuine in his post-award interview, the highlights of which you can read in the AP writeup. Like I said in the last post, I really dislike the sportsman’s cliches. Kudos to Hernandez for saying what he felt rather than offering us the obligatory “I feel honored to have been considered” claptrap.
The Angels signed Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani for a $2.3 million signing bonus last weekend. They may have damaged goods on their hands. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that Ohtani underwent a physical that revealed a first-degree sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament. As a result, he got a platelet-rich plasma injection on October 20. This was made known to teams after Ohtani entered MLB’s posting system, so it wasn’t like the Angels went into this blind.
Ohtani’s report said, “Although partial damage of UCL in deep layer of his right UCL exists, he is able to continue full baseball participation with sufficient elbow care program.” It also said Ohtani “will most likely be available to start his throwing program approximately a month from the PRP.”
Passan notes that the report also mentioned that a “small free body” floats in Ohtani’s elbow near his UCL.
Ohtani isn’t without other injuries. He battled hamstring and ankle issues throughout 2017 and underwent right ankle surgery back in October. Thankfully for the Angels, this diagnosis is about as good as it could be considering the circumstances. However, if Ohtani does exacerbate his UCL issue, he may ultimately need Tommy John surgery at some point, which would take him out of action for at least a year.