Toronto Blue Jays: Prospect Eric Pardinho and his road to recovery

Earlier this year, the Toronto Blue Jays #12 ranked prospect Eric Pardinho underwent Tommy John surgery, and he already looks to be on the right track to return on time.

Signed during the 2017 international free agent period, Eric Pardinho is a highly touted right-handed pitcher from Brazil. He was ranked the 5th best international prospect by the MLB pipeline when he was signed by the Toronto Blue Jays, with scouts raving about his fastball and his pitch control on the mound.

He began his professional career in 2018 with the rookie league Bluefield Blue Jays, and by the end of 2019, he had compiled an impressive 2.57 ERA with 99 strikeouts, 32 walks, and a 1.129 WHIP. His impressive control on the mound, combined with his plus curveball and low 90s fastball put him years ahead of his age, something he is used to seeing considering he is usually 3-4 years younger than his teammates and competition. 

Last season was rough for Pardinho, where injuries delayed and prematurely ended his season. He would miss the first part of the season due to strained ligament in his pitching elbow, and wouldn’t pitch until late June. He would pitch 37.2 innings before being shut down for a separate lower back injury.

The bad news wouldn’t stop in 2020, as Pardinho would go under the knife in mid-February to fully repair the elbow, an injury that will sideline him for the entire season. While this injury and recovery process will not be a career-ender for the Brazilian, it will be tough to see Pardinho miss roughly 2 years of development due to the various injuries over the past two years.

Now for the good news.

After his surgery in February, Paridnho is already back in the gym and working on getting back on the diamond. While he is obviously nowhere near throwing full force on the mound, it is encouraging to see the young prospect back in the gym working out after undergoing a major surgery roughly two months ago.

To see Paridnho also keeping a positive attitude after the past two seasons and the injuries he has been through is another encouraging sign, considering the Blue Jays are still high on their young prospect returning to the outstanding form he was on before the injuries derailed his season.

The 5’10 right-hander is only 19 years old and will easily recover from his TMJ surgery and be back on the mound at some point in 2021. I am sure the Blue Jays organization will be cautious in his return, and if he can recover and return to the impressive form he was pitching at before his injuries, Pardinho could easily shoot up the prospect leaderboard and be on the fast track to reaching the majors in no time.