The Tampa Bay Rays have lost young starlet Matt Moore to a season-ending injury which will require surgery, it was confirmed by manager Joe Maddon today.
According to MLB.com, Moore required a second MRI scan after the initial examination was inconclusive. The pitcher was put on the 15-day disabled list and sent to renowned orthopaedic surgeon Dr James Andrews.
MLB.com revealed the second scan showed there was not a complete tear of the UCL in his left elbow and the Rays were unsure whether to go for the surgery option or attempt rehabilitation.
However this decision was made yesterday when Moore played catch with head athletic trainer Ron Porterfield before Monday’s game, where the Rays were thumped 7-1 by the Baltimore Orioles.
Moore admitted he grimaced and felt pain during and after the session which confirmed the decision to go for the surgery. The date for the procedure has not yet been confirmed but the 24-year-old will not be seen in a Tampa Bay uniform until 2015.
The youngster became an MLB All-Star last year and a big future is forecast for Moore but this is a major setback which Maddon hopes he can recover from.
Moore has become the 13th player since the start of Spring Training to require the Tommy John surgery which is worrying, according to MLB.com reporter Jim Duquette.
“It’s a big blow. Matt Moore is one of the top young starting pitchers in baseball and at time at the mound it looked like he was just playing catch, some of his stuff was terrific,” Duquette said.
“The Tommy John surgeries this season have been very alarming with Moore become the thirteenth player. All of last year we only had 21.”
Moore achieved a respectable 17-4 record in 2013 with one shutout and an earned run average of 3.29 to win himself a place in the All-Stars.
But the 24-year-old’s season has hardly got going and after playing just two matches (both losses) Moore has been pulled out for the rest of the season.
Rays manager Maddon has not confirmed how he will cover for the loss of the starting pitcher. His side have a solid but unimpressive 7-7 record this season after yesterday’s loss.
Tampa Bay have two games left of the three game series against the Orioles before they host the formidable Yankees at the Tropicana Field.
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