Colorado’s decision not to trade 38-year-old closer Rafael Betancourt may be a costly one, as he left last night’s game with an elbow injury.
Troy Renck of the Denver Post speculates that it’s a serious injury–and specifically a torn ulnar collateral ligament–because “several teammates quietly patted him on the back” and “the gravity of the moment was powerful.”
He’ll undergo further testing, but a torn UCL would require Tommy John surgery and knock Betancourt out for most or perhaps all of next season. And at age 38 that might end his career.
Betancourt’s contract includes a $4.25 million mutual option for 2014, which the Rockies likely would have exercised. If he’s hurt they’ll no doubt decline the option, paying him a $250,000 buyout.
Phillies outfielder Andrew McCutchen would have opened the regular season on the injured list if it had started on time. Now, with the start of the season pushed back at least a few months due to coronavirus (COVID-19), the veteran five-time All-Star says he will be “ready to go” whenever the season begins, he told NBC Sports Philadelphia.
McCutchen, 33, tore his ACL in early June, ending his 2019 campaign. To that point, he had been quite productive for the Phillies, batting .256/.378/.457 with 10 home runs and 29 RBI over 262 plate appearances. If and when the 2020 season does begin, he will likely reprise his role as the leadoff hitter, this time under new manager Joe Girardi.
2020 marks the second year of McCutchen’s three-year, $50 million contract initially signed with the Phillies in December 2018. The Phillies also hold a $15 million club option for the 2022 season with a $3 million buyout.