Pitching with a partially torn UCL in his pitching arm since July of 2014, the Yankees and Tanaka’s camp have avoided having Tommy John Surgery thus far, but how far can they go in avoiding the procedure? I also make the point that even if the Yankees ace somehow eludes the injury for the duration of his 7 year contract – that the fans are only seeing him at 85 – 90%. I thought the move was to have TJ Surgery in 2014, and upon returning from it, he would be able to turn it lose like an ace should.
Hunter Stokes (BBBA Featured Writer)
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What is better: 5 Years and an average of 200 Innings Thrown, or 6 years of throwing 150 – 165 IP?
The diagnosis of Masahiro Tanaka‘s slightly torn elbow was first disclosed in July of 2014. Had he gone for Tommy John Surgery there for repair, he could be back at full strength right about now in time.
Instead of going ahead with a procedure (that is operating at about an 86% rate of full return for pitchers,) the Japanese born Tanaka has been nursing the injury since the start of the 2015 season.
Having signed a 7 year deal worth $155 MIL – that also included a $20 MIL posting fee, the Yankees were hoping to land an ace that could pivot their rotation from 2014 – 2020.
While it is amazing the man can even throw with this lingering issue, Tanaka authored a great WHIP of 0.994 and a respectable ERA of 3.51 in 24 Game Starts during 2015. Here is the problem though, he missed 2 months of the season when his elbow flared up. Read the rest of this entry