Via James Wagner and Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post:
Nationals catcher and opening day cleanup hitter Wilson Ramos will likely undergo hamate bone surgery on his left hand Wednesday morning, according to multiple people familiar with situation. The procedure would sideline the Nationals’ bedrock catcher for more than a month and affect him once he returns.
The Nationals haven’t confirmed that the surgery is happening yet because Ramos is seeing specialist Kenneth Means in Baltimore on Wednesday for a second opinion. But it’s pretty much a given that the talented 26-year-old backstop will have to go under the knife.
Ramos has some of the best batted ball distance in MLB and he slugged 16 home runs in just 78 games last season. Hamate bone injuries are notorious for sapping power from baseball players, even post-surgery.
Athletics right-hander Jharel Cotton will undergo Tommy John surgery, per an announcement on Saturday. Cotton initially experienced some elbow soreness during a Cactus League start earlier this week and was officially diagnosed with a strained ulnar collateral ligament and strained flexor muscle on Thursday. He’ll be out of commission until 2019 at the earliest.
This isn’t the first time Cotton has dealt with elbow issues. According to MLB.com’s Jane Lee, he had screws inserted in his right elbow after sustaining a stress fracture in 2013 and suffered some minor elbow discomfort again last fall. Prior to his diagnosis, the 24-year-old was poised for his third run with the A’s in 2018. He pitched his first full season with the club in 2017, turning in a 5.58 ERA, 3.7 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 in 24 starts and 129 innings.
Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle adds that the team is open to adding pitching depth this spring, though they’ll wait to see if the price goes down on some free agents first. Barring that, right-handed long reliever Andrew Triggs could be tabbed to fill the fifth spot in the rotation.