While pitcher Max Meyer is a franchise cornerstone, it will be a long time before the No. 3 pick from the 2020 MLB Draft takes the mound for the Miami Marlins again. In his second MLB start, Meyer lasted only two-thirds of an inning, throwing just 10 pitches before leaving with an injury. On Thursday, the severity of the injury was revealed, and it’s not good.
Christina De Nicola of MLB.com reported on Thursday that Meyer will undergo Tommy John surgery.
#Marlins Max Meyer's MRI on Monday revealed a tear in his UCL.
He will undergo Tommy John surgery by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in L.A. Date TBD. Near future. @MLBPipeline
— Christina De Nicola (@CDeNicola13) July 28, 2022
After the news broke, the MLB world sent its best wishes to the 23-year-old rookie.
— Darren Wolfson (@DWolfsonKSTP) July 28, 2022
Oh man, this is absolutely brutal. https://t.co/Ek99xULc9I
— John Stolnis (@JohnStolnis) July 28, 2022
— Sam Dykstra (@SamDykstraMiLB) July 28, 2022
Brutal. Just brutal luck for the rookie. 😞 https://t.co/UVNww4luOI
— Travis Reilly (@mmmtravis) July 28, 2022
There are two ways of looking at this news.
One is obvious, that it’s a terrible break. Tommy John surgery will end his 2022 season. While it’s possible that Meyer could be back at the end of the 2023 season, the most likely scenario is that he won’t return to an MLB mound until spring training in 2024.
That’s bad news for all parties involved. Meyer has only thrown six innings in his MLB career but the stuff he’s showcased has been dazzling.
Max Meyer, 96mph Fastball and 92mph Slider, Overlay pic.twitter.com/g4iYcjvyiP
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) July 16, 2022
But while the bad news is obvious, there’s some good news to take from this, as well. Pitchers have a high success rate of coming back from Tommy John surgery and pitching well.
In 2018, Shohei Ohtani underwent Tommy John surgery. He’s pitched remarkably well since coming back. More recently, Justin Verlander had Tommy John surgery. Despite that — and that he’s 39 — Verlander is now arguably pitching better than he has at any point of his career, which was already on a Hall of Fame track. And those are just two examples on a vast list of pitchers to bounce back from Tommy John surgery.
Meyer being sidelined is certainly not good news. Still, there’s every reason to believe that he’ll be back in top form when he does return to the mound.