In theaters now is “Million Dollar Arm,” Disney’s version of Rinku Singh and Dinesh Kumar Patel’s unlikely journey from game show winners in India to minor league pitchers in the United States. Jerry Crasnick of ESPN has their story.
Along the way, Crasnick tells us that, though their major league baseball dreams didn’t materialize, one of them did get to experience something many, many major league pitchers have lately: Tommy John surgery for Singh:
Last summer, Singh experienced another ritual that’s become increasingly more commonplace among young American and Latino males in his new profession: He underwent Tommy John surgery on his left elbow. Like Matt Harvey, Jose Fernandez and so many other All-Stars/household names, Singh is dealing with the emotional and physical fallout of an ulnar collateral ligament tear. He’ll spend this summer rehabbing in an effort to return to the playing field in 2015.
In this case, I do not think we can realistically look at the subject being overworked in highly-competitive youth traveling leagues as the culprit.
The Padres announced on Sunday that the club signed pitcher Jordan Lyles to a one-year major league contract with a club option for 2019. According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, Lyles will earn $750,000 in 2018. Pitcher Travis Wood was designated for assignment to create room on the 40-man roster for Lyles.
Lyles, 27, had miserable results between the Rockies and Padres last season, compiling an aggregate 7.75 ERA with a 55/22 K/BB ratio over 69 2/3 innings. While he specifically gave up 24 earned runs in 23 innings across five starts with the Padres, it was a small sample. A full season at the pitcher-friendly Petco Park, as opposed to Colorado’s Coors Field, might help revitalize his career.
Wood, 30, went to the Padres at the non-waiver trade deadline from the Royals this past season. Overall, the lefty posted an aggregate 6.80 ERA with a 65/45 K/BB ratio in 94 innings. He’ll earn $6.5 million this season and has an $8 million mutual option with a $1 million buyout for 2019. So, the Padres are just eating $7.5 million minus the league minimum, assuming Wood latches on elsewhere.