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Bobby Parnell is “50-50” to need Tommy John surgery

Apr 4, 2014, 10:47 AM EDT

Bobby Parnell Getty Getty Images

For now Bobby Parnell is trying the rest-and-rehab route, but the Mets closer told Adam Rubin of ESPN New York that doctors have told him it’s “50-50” that he’ll eventually require Tommy John surgery to repair a torn elbow ligament.

General manager Sandy Alderson indicated that Parnell would wait six weeks to make a decision regarding surgery, but the right-hander said he’d rather decide in two weeks because if he does need to go under the knife he’d like to do it early enough to potentially be available in early 2015.

Of course, Tommy John surgery typically carries a recovery timetable of at least 12 months, so it’s already late enough that Parnell would be no sure thing to be ready for Opening Day next season anyway.

Jose Valverde is serving as the Mets’ fill-in closer and fellow bullpen veteran Kyle Farnsworth was called up from Triple-A to take on a setup role.

  1. chill1184 - Apr 4, 2014 at 10:48 AM

    Get well Parnell

  2. sdelmonte - Apr 4, 2014 at 11:00 AM

    Vic Black underwhelmed in spring training, but I figure he will get his chance to close if he is even halfway decent in Las Vegas.

    I wonder if the Mets and Braves can team up for a Tommy John discount package.

  3. The Dangerous Mabry - Apr 4, 2014 at 11:05 AM

    50% chance he needs Tommy John surgery now, 50% chance he’ll need it after a 3 month rehab and one game back on the mound, is more like it. I totally understand waiting for inflammation to die down and checking things out before any surgery, but it sure seems likely that he’ll be missing the season.

    Get well, Bobby. Your career was just starting to get going the past couple of years, and it’s a shame to see that get derailed.

  4. xdj511 - Apr 4, 2014 at 11:06 AM

    Feel free to post examples if I’m wrong, but I can’t recall a case where somebody was 50-50 needing Tommy John surgery and didn’t eventually end up having it.

    Bobby. Go under the knife now. Be ready by May 1, 2015. This season is already shaping up to be a disaster for the Mets. Look toward reclaiming the closer’s role when Harvey is back up to speed and hopefully they have solved some of their other question marks. There’s just no reason to try to tough it out this season.

    • paperlions - Apr 4, 2014 at 11:49 AM

      The key word is eventually. Wainwright pitched after being diagnosed with a partially torn UCL for several years and it was fine, until one day, it wasn’t. Pretty much every pitcher has UCL damage and minor tears, and they pitch until they can’t and then have surgery.

      • xdj511 - Apr 4, 2014 at 12:02 PM

        Wainwright is a good example. But even he had to go under the knife eventually. Parnell may as well do it now instead of trying to gut it out for a couple of seasons, and then missing 2016 when the Mets will hopefully have a better team.

      • paperlions - Apr 4, 2014 at 12:05 PM

        Right. I’m just saying that because recovery is not 100% guaranteed, if a player can pitch with his current condition, it seems like he should pitch until he can’t….of course, if he can’t be effective….then the decision is already made.

  5. @thekid9ball - Apr 4, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    Reblogged this on The Fantasy Forensic and commented:
    If I was Parnell ..Tommy John it is. We have pitchers throwing harder after that surgery. Why risk 50/50. Get it fixed

  6. zdravit - Apr 4, 2014 at 7:02 PM

    Failed closer. Call it a career.

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