Kris Medlen’s setback from Tommy John elbow surgery was initially deemed minor last month, but now Carroll Rogers of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves right-hander has been shut down for at least another six weeks.
General manager Frank Wren told Rogers that Medlen “is suffering from lingering soreness in his elbow and will now halt his throwing program until September at the earliest.”
In other words, odds are his next big-league appearance will come in 2012, which is a tough blow for a Braves bullpen that could use another reliable arm or two beyond the over-worked trio of Craig Kimbrel, Jonny Venters, and Eric O’Flaherty.
The good news is that Dr. James Andrews’ recent examination concluded that Medlen’s surgically repaired ligament remains intact, so the Braves are hopeful some extra rest will do the trick. He went under the knife in mid-August of last year.