The injury woes have continued for left-handed starting pitcher Carlos Rodon. The White Sox announced that after seeking the opinion of a second doctor, he will undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery on Wednesday.
This announcement comes almost two weeks after the 26-year old made his latest start vs. the Orioles on May 1st. The day following, he was placed on the 10-day injured list with an “edema in the flexor mass” and Rick Hahn initially told the media that everything, including Tommy John surgery, was on the table.
Injuries have unfortunately plagued Rodon as of late, preventing him from becoming the ace in the rotation that many pegged him to be. In 2017, he missed the first two months of the season with bursitis in his left biceps before being shutdown in September with a shoulder injury. Once getting arthroscopic shoulder surgery, Rodon was sidelined yet again and didn’t make his first start of the 2018 season until June 9th. Now with this latest injury, Rodon joins Michael Kopech and Dane Dunning on the list of pitchers in the organization to most recently receive the procedure.
Looking ahead, this is obviously a pretty big blow for the 2020 starting rotation. With Michael Kopech set to return and Dylan Cease likely getting a promotion to the majors sooner rather than later, the ideal rotation that has been talked about for so long had a legitimate chance of becoming a reality. Now with Rodon likely out until the second half of next season due to the recovery process, the organization will have to figure out how they want to fill that void.
It is important to note that Rodon is heading into his arbitration three and four seasons before becoming a free agent after 2021. Considering he will likely not return until at least the summer of next season, it seems to make too much sense for the club to go out and find another starter to join Lopez, Kopech, Cease, and Giolito in the rotation. If they are serious about contending too, they will have to look for more than just a fifth-starter candidate. Now is the perfect time to go out and find a medium to high-end pitcher who can be a part of this rotation for the coming years.
Of course while this news is very disappointing, that there will always be players in a rebuild who don’t pan out as expected due to unforeseen circumstances. For Rodon, this latest injury among others might prevent him from being a part of the White Sox long-term plans, especially since he is a Scott Boras client. We’ll just have to see how Rick Hahn and co. plan to fill the void in the rotation as the team inches closer to becoming a contender next season and beyond.
In other news, Nate Jones had a surgery to repair a flexor mass tear on Monday and Micker Adolfo is set to receive arthroscopic surgery on his elbow. Both will miss the remainder of this season. Chuck Garfien of NBC Sports Chicago reports that Adolfo is expected to be ready for the beginning of the 2020 season.
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