Joel Zumaya initially hoped to avoid surgery after gruesomely fracturing his elbow while throwing a pitch last week, but the Tigers announced today that he’ll go under the knife next Monday.
Here’s the latest from trainer Kevin Rand:
Joel’s going to undergo a procedure to have a screw put into his elbow to stabilize that olecranon fracture. It’s very, very common surgery, to be perfectly honest with you. It’s one, especially when we took a look at it with the olecranon fracture going through the bone, that it was probably the best option as far as stabilization and to strengthen that area for him to pitch in the future. You have plenty of pitchers that have had this procedure done that are still pitching and have pitched without any incident.
Zumaya and his triple-digit fastball have already survived multiple surgeries, but obviously he’s far from a sure thing to be ready for next season.
The Red Sox and Mariners left nothing on the table Friday night, going head-to-head in a series opener that eventually ended 14-10 in the Sox’ favor. Led by Steven Wright and Wade LeBlanc — neither of whom made it past the fifth inning — the teams combined for 34 hits and four home runs, including two moonshots from Seattle’s Nelson Cruz and a five-run rally that gave Boston the edge in the seventh.
In the sixth inning, however, the Red Sox were still scrambling to make up a four-run deficit. Left fielder J.D. Martinez cut it in half with one swing, pouncing on an 89.5-mph fastball from Seattle right-hander Nick Vincent and posting it to dead center field for a two-run shot.
The 427-foot blast was Martinez’s 23rd of the season, tying Mike Trout for the most home runs in the league this year. While he still has a ways to go before eclipsing the career-best 45-HR mark he set in 2017, he’s off to a strong start this season: Entering Friday’s game, the 30-year-old slugger was batting .315/.386/.623 with a 1.009 OPS and AL-leading 55 RBI in 308 PA. He finished Friday’s game 4-for-5 with five RBI, just one triple shy of hitting for the cycle.
Heading into the All-Star Break, both Martinez and Trout still have some competition for the home run title. Jose Ramirez is sitting at 22 homers, while Nelson Cruz and Khris Davis are tied at 20 apiece.