Griffin: Blue Jays starter Drew Hutchison will further test his injured elbow
The Jay have sent injured righthander Drew Hutchison back to the club's training base in Florida to contemplate his next move, after orthopedist, Dr. Timothy Krimchek, at his office in Cincinnati, confirmed the club's original diagnosis of a sprained ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) in his right elbow. Surgery for Hutchison is a strong possibility.
Hutchison walked off the mound after nine pitches against the Phillies last Friday, the third Jays starter in five days that was forced onto the disabled list with an injury suffered during a game. The severity of the Hutchison sprain makes Tommy John a possibility.
"He's taken that information and reported to Dunedin," Jays' manager John Farrell said. "He'll go through some additional testing with our doctors in Florida and then at that point, he'll sit down with his family and determine the next plan of action. We will likely have much more clarity by Thursday, the off day on what the next steps will be. Hutchison was born and raised in nearby Lakeland, Florida.
The danger for Hutchison in not opting for the surgery now, is that the condition could worsen during exercise and rehab and then he could be forced to have the same surgery several months down the road, delaying his comeback. That scenario has happened to other pitchers through the years. With the success rate for the ligament replacement surgery at an all-time high, Hutchison must consider all options and make the final choice.
"That's probably the scenarios that he's walking through, once the information is collected" Farrell said. "To best determine what to do next. I'm not saying that's completely ruled out, but at this point he probably needs a day or two to work through on his own behalf and certainly discussing things with his family."
Hutchison, in his rookie season as a 21-year-old, had been 5-3, with a 4.61 ERA in 11 starts. His rapid rise to the majors had been one of 2012's most pleasant surprises.
Meanwhile, the Tommy John surgery performed on Kyle Drabek's right elbow by Dr. James Andrews on Tuesday afternoon was a success. He will begin his 12-month rehab shortly.