Sep 13, 2012, 12:33 PM EDT
UPDATE II: Yocum walks it back. Now he says he did talk to the Nats. Oy.
UPDATE: Boras says, nope, the Nats DID talk to Yocum. This is getting interesting.
12:33PM: All throughout the Strasburg Shutdown drama, we repeatedly heard how the doctors were all saying that it’s advisable to shut Strasburg down. That doctors were consulted and that the Nats’ plan was medically sound. Those of us who didn’t like the decision were told that we had to defer to the team and their cadre of medical experts because we, after all, are not doctors.
Only one problem: no one with the Nationals ever asked the guy who performed Strasburg’s surgery what he thought about it and, more significantly, the guy who performed the surgery tells the L.A. Times today that there are no studies supporting the proposition that shutting him down will protect him at all:
The doctor who performed elbow surgery on Stephen Strasburg said he did not tell the Washington Nationals to shut down their ace pitcher.
“I wasn’t asked,” Dr. Lewis Yocum told the Los Angeles Times … Yocum said that, had he been asked, he would not have been able to provide conclusive information about whether Strasburg’s long-term health would be best served by shutting him down.
“There’s no statistic as far as studies,” Yocum said.
Yocum further notes that it’s GM Mike Rizzo who came up with the 160 inning shutdown standard himself. That he imposed it in the case of Jordan Zimmermann, and that he’s doing the same with Strasburg without the aide of any medical directive.
Which, hey, that’s OK in and of itself. Zimmermann has worked out so far, so maybe Rizzo has stumbled upon a bold and effective new standard here. And it is his team and he can do what he wants and what he thinks is best for it.
But given the lack of studies on the matter, those people supporting the shutdown decision have to give up shaming those of us who don’t into silence with some notion that medical necessity or insight governed this decision. End the erroneous appeals to medical authority — like Scott Boras has done repeatedly — and own up to the fact that it’s Mike Rizzo, not medical science, making this call.
- Settling the Score: Friday’s results 18
- The benches cleared in Friday’s Giants-Rangers game 168
- The Winners and Losers at the Trade Deadline 70
- 2015 MLB Trade Deadline Tracker 11
- Report: Yoenis Cespedes heading to the New York Mets 37
- The Blue Jays pick up Ben Revere from the Phillies 65
- Cubs trade for Dan Haren 28
- Cardinals add more bullpen help, get Jonathan Broxton from Brewers 13
- The benches cleared in Friday’s Giants-Rangers game (170)
- Blue Jays acquire David Price from the Tigers (112)
- Rangers land ace left-hander Cole Hamels from Phillies (106)
- Royals make another big move, get Ben Zobrist from A’s (95)
- Report: Rockies trade Troy Tulowitzki to Blue Jays for Jose Reyes and prospects (90)