Cardinals right-hander Lance Lynn will miss the entire 2016 season following Tommy John elbow surgery, the team announced.
Lynn dealt with a strained forearm around midseason and then had an ankle injury late in the year, finishing with a 3.03 ERA in 175 innings after topping 200 innings in 2013 and 2014.
He has a 3.37 ERA in 791 career innings, so this is a big blow for the Cardinals and could cause them to make an increased effort to re-sign free agent right-hander John Lackey.
Even if they don’t re-sign Lackey the Cardinals still have plenty of rotation depth in Adam Wainwright, Carlos Martinez, Michael Wacha, Jaime Garcia, and several other inexperienced options with some upside, although there are a lot of health-related question marks in that group.
Lynn, who’ll turn 29 years old in May, will make $7.5 million while on the disabled list in 2016 and is also under contract for $7.5 million in 2017.