Kyle Drabek’s sprained UCL will require Tommy John surgery, Blue Jays manager John Farrell said Monday.
Drabek had his first Tommy John surgery in high school before the Phillies made him the 18th overall pick in the 2006 draft. He was sent to Toronto in the Roy Halladay trade and he made his major league debut at the end of the 2010 season.
While Drabek was a major bust in 2011, he was back showing plenty of promise this year, particularly in the spring and in April, a month he finished 3-2 with a 2.40 ERA. Unfortunately, wildness took hold after that, possibly because something was going wrong in his elbow. At the time he was placed on the DL this month, he was 4-7 with a 4.67 ERA and an ugly 47/47 K/BB ratio in 71 1/3 innings.
Drabek probably won’t be back with the Jays until mid-2013. He, Brian Wilson, Joakim Soria and Joey Devine will all attempt to come back from their second Tommy John surgeries next year. It’s not at all common, but Chris Capuano, Jason Isringhausen and Hong-Chih Kuo are among the pitchers to have success after two Tommy Johns.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.
Reds reliever Raisel Iglesias hasn’t appeared in a Grapefruit League game since March 14 and now we know why. He injured his right elbow and both hips falling in the shower three weeks ago, Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. He has had anti-inflammatory shots applied in both areas and he’ll be be shut down from pitching for a few more days.
Iglesias might not be ready for Opening Day, according to manager Bryan Price. Iglesias, however, thinks otherwise. He said, “I’m going to be OK. I’m probably going to throw one bullpen, and after that, mentally and physically, I’ll be ready to join the season and compete.”
Price said throughout the offseason that he intended to pick his closer according to the matchups rather than naming one official closer. As a result, this injury likely doesn’t change much except that Michael Lorenzen, Drew Storen, and Tony Cingrani may get a few more early season save chances if Iglesias doesn’t start the season on time.
Iglesias, 27, finished last season with a 2.53 ERA and an 83/26 K/BB ratio in 78 1/3 innings across five starts and 32 relief appearances.