If the Cubs trade Ryan Dempster and Matt Garza it won’t be Randy Wells stepping into one of the vacant rotation spots, as the right-hander underwent elbow surgery this week.
It was arthroscopic, rather than the more serious Tommy John variety, but Doug Padilla of ESPN Chicago reports that Wells is all but certain to miss the remainder of the season.
Wells cleared waivers last month after being designated for assignment, as no team was willing to take on his $2.7 million contract, but if healthy the 29-year-old with a 4.08 ERA in 529 career innings would have been an option to rejoin the new-look rotation following the trade deadline.
Pitcher David Phelps has a torn UCL and will undergo Tommy John surgery, ending his 2018 season, the Mariners announced on Wednesday. Phelps was making brief one-inning stints in the Cactus League as he worked his way back from a procedure to remove a bone spur from his elbow last September. He said he felt the ligament tear on his final pitch against the Angels in his March 17 appearance.
Phelps, 31, was expected to set up for closer Edwin Diaz. The right-hander, between the Marlins and Mariners last season, posted a 3.40 ERA with a 62/26 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. He and the Mariners avoided arbitration in January, agreeing on a $5.55 million salary for the 2018 campaign. Phelps will become eligible to become a free agent at the end of the season.
As the Mariners noted in their statement, the expected recovery period for Tommy John surgery is 12-15 months, so this very likely cuts into Phelps’ 2019 season as well.