Mike Adams struggled down the stretch before being shut down with neck and shoulder problems, and now the Rangers reliever will undergo surgery next week for thoracic outlet syndrome.
That’s the same surgery Chris Carpenter underwent back in July, when it was called “season-ending.” Instead he made it back for September and won a playoff game this week.
None of which guarantees anything regarding Adams’ recovery timetable, but the hope is that he’ll be ready for spring training. Adams will be a free agent this offseason, so it’s rough timing for a pitcher who’s been one of baseball’s best relievers for the past five years and, if healthy, would finally be in line for a big payday at age 34.
Michael Fulmer was the 2016 AL Rookie of the Year Award winner. Last year he had his worst season as a major leaguer, finishing 3-12 with a 4.69 ERA and a 110/46 K/BB ratio in 132 1/3 innings. This spring he has been utterly lost in eight innings of work, getting hit hard and exhibiting diminished velocity. A few days ago, the Tigers shut him down and said they’d work on his mechanics.
Now comes the news that no one wanted to hear: the Tigers have announced that Dr. James Andrews has recommended that he get Tommy John surgery.
Fulmer is said to be seeking a third opinion — before Andrews he had an MRI and team doctors feared the worst — but let’s be real about what’s gonna happen here: Fulmer is going to miss the entire 2019 season and, in all likelihood, a good chunk of 2020 as well.
Tough break for Fulmer, one of the few good pitchers the Tigers had developed in some time.