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Nationals prospect Matt Purke needs Tommy John surgery

May 28, 2014, 5:51 PM EST

Matt Purke AP

Matt Purke, who turned down signing with the Rangers as a first-round draft pick in 2009 and then got a $4 million big-league contract to sign with the Nationals as a third-round draft pick in 2011, needs Tommy John elbow surgery and will miss the remainder of the season.

Purke was initially drafted 14th overall after a standout college career at TCU, but he’s been limited to just 136 career innings due to injuries. Before being shut down this year he had an 8.04 ERA and 22/18 K/BB ratio in 31 innings at Double-A as a 23-year-old, and because of the MLB contract he received Purke will be out of minor-league options by the time he returns from surgery.

  1. Conner012367 - May 28, 2014 at 5:54 PM

    It sad that he needs Tommy john surgery, but at least its not any more bad news for the Rangers, cuz hes not ours anymore.

  2. illegalblues - May 28, 2014 at 5:59 PM

    man, that freshman year at TCU looks to have ruined him. looked so promising too

    • paperlions - May 28, 2014 at 7:00 PM

      TCU is one of the more notorious schools for ruining pitching prospects. Not shocking at all that he needs TJS after only 136 pro innings.

      • illegalblues - May 28, 2014 at 8:11 PM

        i’d never heard that before, just stuff about duke and the whole “colleges don’t care about your pitching career” reality. makes sense about TCU the more i look at it today. i remember i was really hoping the braves would’ve drafted purke over minor back a few ago.

      • paperlions - May 28, 2014 at 8:21 PM

        Texas, Rice, and TCU are traditionally 3 of the worst and most prolific offenders….but a lot of that is that those schools also get a LOT of high end HS talent. NC State was hell on Rodon this year…there are others that regularly abuse their pitchers….apparently, most in MLB heavily consider the school guys attended and their usage when drafting….realizing that some guys may be ruined and others may require TJS early on and lose a year of development.

  3. adenzeno - May 28, 2014 at 6:12 PM

    I suspect he threw LOTS if innings in Haigh School and summer ball long before TCU..Plus, having seen him throw, it hurt my arm to watch

  4. adenzeno - May 28, 2014 at 6:12 PM

    High School…need an edit..

  5. fordman84 - May 29, 2014 at 8:56 AM

    Just more proof he should have taken the Rangers money and begun working with an organization that would invest long term in him, instead of a college that was only interested in him carrying the team for two years and then “who cares what happens after that”.

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