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Pitchers Post Tommy John Surgery


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Based on the reaction to Tropeano's performance so far this season, it seems to me people have short memories in terms of pitchers recovering from Tommy John Surgery.

 Just a refresher:

Tyler Skaggs - surgery 08/2014:

Returned July 2016 - 10 GS 49.2 IP 1.490 WHIP 97 ERA+ 9.2 H/9 4.2 BB/9 9.1 K/9

2017 season: 16 GS 85 IP 1.388 WHIP 94 ERA+ 9.5 H/9 3.0 BB/9 8.0 K/9

2018 season (so far): 20 GS 113.1 IP 125 ERA+ 8.6 H/9 2.7 BB/9 9.4 K/9

Andrew Heaney - surgery 07/2016:

Returned August 2017 - 5 GS 21.2 IP 1.662 WHIP 61 ERA+ 11.2 H/9 3.7 BB/9 11.2 K/9 (special note: 5.0 HR/9(!), 12 HR in 21.2 IP)

2018 season (so far): 19 GS 116.1 IP 1.135 WHIP 114 ERA+ 7.7 H/9 2.5 BB/9 8.6 K/9 

Nick Tropeano - surgery 08/2016:

Returned April 2018 - 13 GS 71 IP 1.366 WHIP 84 ERA+ 8.5 H/9 3.8 BB/9 7.6 K/9

Based on what we've seen in the past, it seems obvious that, post-surgery, pitchers go through an adjustment period of "finding their stuff" again and it is going to take some time for Tropeano to get back to the pitcher they saw prior to the injury (2015-2016: 20 GS 104 IP 1.392 WHIP 108 ERA+ 9.2 H/9 3.2 BB/9 9.0 K/9).

In the beginning of the season, he was in AAA and was supposed to be building up his stamina.  Instead, J.C. Ramirez made 2 starts (April 2nd and April 7) for a total 6.2 IP before needing Tommy John surgery himself.  Matt Shoemaker made 1 start on March 31st for 5.2 IP before exiting due to a forearm injury.  Additionally, between opening day and now, Ohtani only made 9 starts, and the starting rotation has been whittled down to three of the original depth (Skaggs, Heaney, and Tropeano) meaning they are now depending on a 21 year old rookie in Barria and 28 year old reliever/journeyman in Felix Pena to make meaningful starts.  

So, is Tropeano an "2" starter that is just recovering from injury?  No, but he's a capable 5 starter with the ability to pitch like a 3 starter at times and is under club control through 2021...in other words, in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man rules.  We still need him in 2019.

Additionally, we are likely to see a similar recovery experience with J.C Ramirez (Surgery May 2018, likely return May/June 2019),  Garrett Richards (Surgery July 2018, likely return Aug/Sept 2019), and Kenyan Middleton (Surgery May 2018, likely return June 2019).





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1 minute ago, Blarg said:

Most people's memory on Angelswin consists of what is irritating them today. 

Lot's of "lizard-brain" reactions but we definitely need to be patient with guys like Tropeano, Barria, and Pena.  The only guys that should have some type of higher expectations are Skaggs and Heaney and they are meeting it right now. 

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29 minutes ago, Angel Oracle said:

And patience with Suarez and Canning as they debut next season

Again, they will need at least 10 starters and at least 11 relievers between here and AAA for depth.

In his past 10 starts, Canning has been averaging around 85 pitches per start with a low of 83 to a high of 89.  Seems to me they are limiting his innings through the pitch count.  I wonder if they have a mind to promote Canning at some point in September to give him a taste of the MLB and to also expand back to a 6-man rotation to take some of burden off Tropeano, Barria and Pena.

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