We knew news on Adam Ottavino was coming today, and the news is not good. The overpowering righty is likely done for the season with a slight tear in his ulnar collateral ligament, and is facing Tommy John surgery. The story was first reported by the Denver Post:
JUST IN: #Rockies closer Adam Ottavino says he's facing season-ending Tommy John surgery: http://t.co/YKm2kIihvW pic.twitter.com/t4tyOROWWp— Denver Post Sports (@DPostSports) May 4, 2015
First Ottavino just needed an extra day off after he said his arm felt funny, then he went on the DL for what was being diagnosed as triceps inflammation, and now he's gone for the year facing the dreaded Tommy John surgery.
If this was the first time a Rockies injury followed this pattern, it would be stunning and shocking. What's perhaps most disappointing about this news, though, is that it feels par for the course with this club. In fact, it marks a significant improvement in how long it took the team to recognize Tyler Chatwood needed Tommy John surgery last season.
Without proper medical information publicly available, it's nearly impossible to prove the medical staff is incompetent and the cause of these problems, but with each passing episode that plays out like this with almost any productive player on the major league roster, it's becoming more and more apparent they're not part of the solution. I don't think this particular incident was their fault, but the large number of injuries to key players that consistently accumulate year after year after year does not reflect well on them.
The sad news on Ottavino also marks the third time in less than a year that the Rockies lost an important arm pitching well when you include Dan Winkler and the aforementioned Chatwood. It's another serious blow to a club that's always searching for more pitching depth. It's nearly impossible to attain any sort of pitching stabilization when you consistently lose this much promising production.
In ten outings this season, Ottavino pitching 10.1 innings and posted a 0.00 ERA, a WHIP of 0.48, struck out 37 percent of the hitter he faced, and held opposing hitters to a batting line of .094 / .171 / .094 (.265 OPS) -- and he looked every bit as dominant as his line indicates.
But as usual when it comes to the Rockies and pitching, it was too good to be true.