The 2014 season has not been kind to young pitchers, as trips to the disabled list keep mounting. The latest victim is Jose Fernandez of the Miami Marlins, who on Tuesday was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a right sprained elbow, as announced by Marlins manager Mike Redmond. Placement on the disabled list was initially precautionary, as Fernandez underwent an MRI exam in Los Angeles. Fernandez will undergo further testing and evaluation upon returning to Miami, as the club awaits the results. The outcome though is pointing to potential season ending Tommy John surgery for the twenty-one year old pitcher, to repair his elbow.
Torn elbow ligaments and Tommy John surgery has been a common trend this season. Whether it be the Braves with Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy or the Athletics with Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin, there has been a increasing trend of pitchers with elbow injuries. Whether it is the result of overuse or delivery methods, remains to be seen, but for the time being it is an alarming concern for clubs with young pitching talent.
At this point in the season, Fernandez was leading both the National League and all of Major League Baseball in strikeouts, with seventy so far on the season. He also over the course of eight starts, had a record of 4-2 with an ERA of 2.44. He is coming off his Rookie of the Year debut last season, where he took the National League and Major League Baseball by storm with his electric stuff. It is a blow for the Marlins, who so far this season have looked like a decent ball club, as they are at the moment two games out of first place in the National League East. The hope right now, is that Fernandez’s injury is not a severe and for a easy recovery. The one thing for sure is that his electric stuff on the mound will be missed the rest of the season, but give everyone greater anticipation for next season.