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More Tommy John Surgeries By The Numbers + Who Is the 1st $100 MIL Pitcher To Go Down With It? + A Scherzer Angle?


Yes Max Scherzer wrapped up the AL Cy Young with a most impressive season in 2013, but the club will be hard pressed to lock up his services beyond the 2014 campaign - when you factor the team wants to re-sign Cabrera in 2016, and also the club is already spending upwards of $45 MIL per year on Justin Verlander and Anibal Sanchez as part of the Starting Pitching Staff.  The team just put out a press release saying 'The club gave a substantial offer, that would have made the RHP, one of the highest paid pitchers in baseball, and he doth refused it."

Yes Max Scherzer wrapped up the AL Cy Young with a most impressive season in 2013, but with TJ surgery becoming so common place with today’s chuckers, who would want to risk that kind of jack for a pitcher one throw way from being sidelined for 12 – 14 months?  In my view it was a mistake not to accept the $$.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): – Credit to Bill Chuck For the Idea:  

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I think Max Scherzer should have taken the contract offer the Tigers threw his way this past weekend.  Reports say it was in the Cole Hamels and Zack Greinke range of 6 YRs/$144 – $147 MIL.

So now that the reigning AL Cy Young Winner didn’t take the deal, he must hope to replicate his 2013 campaign, or at least come some where near it.

Do I think he could make more on the open market, potentially yes.  But for a guy who has never been under a 3 ERA in any one given year, that is a tall order.

Also keep in mind his arm could sideline him with an injury at any point, so there is an inherent risk to not taking the deal.

One of out every 3 Major League Pitchers will go undergo Tommy John Surgery.

If you don’t think this procedure is an epidemic, go follow our ALL – Time TJ Surgery Tracker here.

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The Braves Continue To Step Up To The Plate In The Ervin Santana Signing

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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It was a move that had to be done in my view.  Atlanta has 60% of its Starting Rotation currently in the sick bay, or has questionable thoughts to whether it could pitch near Opening Day.

In the end it is a Win/Win situation for all above.

The Braves acquire a top end of the rotation guy, and it serves as great insurance, and Santana is able to play for a full season trying to re-establish his worth on next winter’s open market.

Sure Atlanta sacrifices a 1st RD pick, but they are still receiving the compensation Pick from the Yankees for the Brian McCann signing.

Santana flies right out the American League, and will look to pad his stats versus the likes of the Mets and Marlins this year, and to avoid the AL Beast, the only teams that were coveting him that he mutually was talking with Read the rest of this entry

MLB 30 Team Power Rankings: Week 17

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Sunday July.21/2013

The Cardinals are the big benefactor of an early July swoon by the Pirates.  Will this team make some moves at the deadline - to aid the young Starting Rotation Innings?  Will Chris Carpenter be able to make an impact for the club at some point this campaign?  They sit perched back up upon the MLBR Power Rankings for now.

The Cardinals are the big benefactor of an early July swoon by the Pirates. Will this team make some moves at the deadline – to aid the young Starting Rotation Innings? Will Chris Carpenter be able to make an impact for the club at some point this campaign? They sit perched back up upon the MLBR Power Rankings for now.  The Cards have made 7 out of the last 12 NLCS showdowns – holding a 3 – 4 record in those years – and a 2 – 1 mark in the World Series.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

The Tampa Bay Rays are making a huge statement.  Even as I write this post, they have a commanding 4 – 1 lead on the Toronto Blue Jays, which would make the 58 – 41, and no worse than 1.5 Games Behind the Boston Red Sox heading into play tomorrow.

The Rays will head to Fenway Park right after this for a four game series – before concluding a 10 game Road Swing at Yankee Stadium.  They could end up in 1st place in the AL East by next week.

With their pitching strength – and new underrated offense, would anyone pick against them for the rest of the season?  I have slotted them 7 positions higher than the previous week.

Chris Carpenter 5 months ago, He is now rehabbing in the Minor Leagues with a chance to come back in 2013 – Amazing!

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MLB Tommy John Surgery Updates

Thursday August 16th, 2012

Bernie Olshansky:  Over the course of this year, there have been more pitchers going in for Tommy John surgery than I can ever remember. And make no mistake, it is mostly pitchers that are falling victim. According to our TJ Tracker, there have been 39 pitchers (including Michael Pineda who had arthroscopic surgery) that had the surgery since March. In the month of August alone, there have already been two pitchers to go under the knife and one that most likely will. Neftali Feliz had the surgery on the first of the month after trying to come back from an arm injury, and he was then being shut down in a rehab assignment. Drew Hutchison of the Blue Jays also had this surgery. It seems like every pitcher will eventually need this surgery in his career. It is becoming the reality of modern day baseball.

Before the surgery, pitchers’ careers were much shorter, some just 7-8 years long. Now with this new technology, careers are prolonged. It’s been said that Tommy John surgery can even strengthen an arm. The ligament is replaced with a tendon (usually from the leg) and the arm is made stronger. Sometimes pitchers are said to throw even harder after the surgery. This may or may not be true; there is some debate. It could be that pitchers are taking more time to condition, but it could also be that they are given a stronger arm. Some pitchers have had the surgery multiple times. One that comes to mind is Brian Wilson of the Giants. Wilson had his first surgery in college. He fully recovered and was converted from a starter to a reliever in the minors. Upon arriving to the majors, Wilson was a fireballer and became the closer. He threw in the upper 90’s even after a surgery like this. It will be interesting to see how he recovers from his second surgery and if he can retain the closers’ role. Read the rest of this entry

ATR: Ask the Reports Answers Your Baseball Questions: TJ, Curse of the Reports, WBC, Japan Boycott, Morneau and Brock, Coors Effect and the Havana A’s

Saturday July 21st, 2012

Jonathan Hacohen:  Posted every Weekend: Your top baseball questions from the past week are answered. E-mail all questions to, message us on Twitter, post on our Facebook Wall and leave comments on our website! There are many ways to reach us and we will get to your questions from all social media outlets!

Jonathan Hacohen: I know…you guys and gals want to talk trades. It seems that everyone is keeping a close eye on the July 31st MLB Non-Waiver Trade Deadline. The action has heated up in recent days. The Astros and Jays got together full a 10-player swap, on the same day that the Rockies and Royals swapped hurler Jonathan Sanchez for Jeremy Guthrie. Then today, the Astros were at it again- trading closer Brett Myers and a bucket full of cash to the White Sox for minor leaguers. What is it with these White Sox??!! They get star power onto their roster for little money or talent having to move the other way. Kenny Williams…we aren’t worthy. 2012 is becoming the Year of the Kenny. With only 10 days to go, what other moves will Kenny and the other Gms pull off? Keep a close eye on our dedicated page called “Rate That Trade“.  We not only give you information on the latest baseball swaps, but also throw in our own two cents in the process…and who doesn’t love an opinion in baseball?

For our weekly Batting Stance Guy video, we feature today Gar’s 10 Step Bryce Harper Home Imitation Kit. BSG is hilarious and a genius. Never mind a novelty act. If I was a GM, I would consider hiring this man as my hitting coach. This man knows stances inside and out. If anyone can produce solid hitting and look good in the process, BSG can do it:

My final thought before jumping into questions is Dr. James Andrews. I have said your name so many times this year that people must think that we are either related or colleagues. Living in Toronto, your name is discussed with respect to the Kyle Drabek and Luis Perez operations. Now word is that Jason Frasor, a 2-time TJ survivor is off to see you on Monday with “forearm tightness.”  I don’t think that Frasor will be going for a 3rd TJ, but man…this is getting scary. We have seen 30+ players (mostly pitchers) undergo this operation since March 2012 alone. Something doesn’t feel right. If I’m Major League Baseball, I am calling up a task force and getting a study on this. Pronto. Give me Dr. Andrews, Dr. Jobe, Tommy John, Nolan Ryan, Greg Maddux, Mike Maddux, Dave Duncan and every possible intelligent baseball/pitching/TJ mind there is and let’s discuss what is happening. Why is it happening. And most importantly, what can we do to prevent it. When we are coming to the point to say that nearly every MLB pitcher may undergo TJ surgery at some point in their career, I think that is a huge problem. We cuddle and baby pitchers. We bring them up slowly and limit their innings. We try to build up arm strength. Yet today’s MLB pitchers are breaking down faster than a Ford Pinto at a Nascar race. Check out our TJ Surgery Tracker. We update it weekly with new and old names found to have TJ surgery, and we have barely scratched the surface. You think the Jays have had it rough? Check out the Royals and Padres. This is one of the biggest issues going in today’s game. We intend to raise awareness and encourage the baseball community to find solutions. Some things are clearly not being done right. Why else are pitchers dropping at alarming rates? We are lucky that Tommy John surgery exists to save many of these pitchers’ careers. But let’s figure out why these pitchers are having TJ in the first place and try to keep them healthy and off the operating tables.

Now let’s get to your top questions of the week: Read the rest of this entry

What Would Baseball be Like Without Tommy John Surgery?

Saturday July 7th, 2012

Sam Evans: Just in the 2012 season, more than thirty pitchers have lost their seasons due to Tommy John surgery. Even in an era where pitchers are congratulated for throwing just two hundred innings, the wear and tear on a pitchers arm still causes them to be forced to have Tommy John surgery. Some have tried to blame it on pitchers arm slots and delivery, but the truth is every pitcher is vulnerable. Obviously, Tommy John surgery is going to continue to be a big part of the game. But my question is: what would major league baseball be like without Tommy John surgery?

MLB reports features two tools that prove to be very useful when learning more about Tommy John surgery and the pitchers affected by it. First of all, the Tommy John surgery tracker, which you can find here, not only gives you an up to date look at the pitchers out with Tommy John (the latest being Daniel Hudson of the Diamondbacks) but it also tells you about Frank Jobe and how he saved Tommy John’s career. The other Tommy John resource MLB reports has to offer is a story that Johnny Anderson, a Toronto Blue Jays player wrote about his two Tommy John surgeries-you can find that here. Read the rest of this entry

TJ Surgery Tracker: The Newest MLB reports Addition

Tuesday April 24th, 2012

Ryan Ritchey:  New on is a Tommy John Surgery link.  This page is going to keep you updated with all the players that have undergone Tommy John Surgery this year and in past years. Many of you know the players that have had the surgery- but for those of you who don’t, this page is for you. Even if you do know who the players are that have had the surgery, maybe you missed one along the way. Either way you should check out the page to keep track of all the good young arms going down to this terrible surgery.

Some of the most recent players to go down to Tommy John are, Ryan Madson, Joakim Soria, and Brian Wilson. Ryan Madson went down in Spring Training with a sore elbow and ended up needing Tommy John. On the other hand Wilson went down with major structural damage in his throwing elbow. He got three opinions to make sure and will indeed be having Tommy John Surgery with Dr. James Andrews.

Tommy John has had a major effect on many teams this season. With the three names that I just mentioned, they are all starting closers with major league teams. With Madson going down, Sean Marshall has had to take over the closing role. The Royals have went to closer by committee after the Soria injury. With Wilson  out, the Giants are not sure right now what they are going to do. Their likely best chance is with Sergio Romo though.

If you know a player that has gotten the surgery and we don’t have them on the list, email us ( and we will add him to the list.  We will be keeping a running total of the surgeries for you, the readers. It is one thing when you see one or two players go down. But with the amount of players that have already undergone the surgery this year, the number looks alarming when you see it in a full list. We thank you for your support of MLB reports and we will continue to bring you everything and anything that relates to the world of baseball. With the effect of Tommy John surgery on the game, we thought it was to dedicate a complete page to the procedure. But there is more. Much more. From the World Baseball Classic, to Interviews, Guest MLB Blogs, Baseball Book Reviews and all other features, the staff at MLB reports covers all the bases!

Ryan Ritchey is a MLB reports Baseball Intern. I am a high school senior, play second base and plan on studying sports journalism in college. I am a huge fan of Barry Larkin and Brandon Phillips. Have been a baseball fan my whole life and have been writing about baseball since freshman year. You can reach me on Twitter (@Ryan13Ritchey)

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My Tommy John Surgery Experiences: The Johnny Anderson Guest MLB Blog

Saturday April 14, 2012


MLB reports – Johnny Anderson (Guest MLB Blogger):  “Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capacity to build the world’s first bionic man.”


The doctors call it “UCLR” – ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction. The Baseball community call it Tommy John Surgery. I call it the resurrection of my career.  Dr. Frank Jobe introduced the world to his experimental procedure in 1974 on the one and only Tommy John. The UCL is the ligament that creates the stability which allows the high-stress action of throwing a baseball. Through repetitive use and a heavy workload, the UCL will indefinitely succumb to failure. The ligament will begin to fray and eventually tear, leaving pitchers in agony on the mound (see Joel Zumaya, Chris Carpenter, etc.)  During the surgery, a new tendon, coming either from the wrist or hamstring is implanted and woven in a figure-eight pattern through holes drilled in the humerus and ulna bones. Sounds gnarly, I know first hand. After surgery, the player will be in a brace with limited mobility. Over time, the brace can be adjusted to certain degrees to promote extension with the elbow until the player has full flexion. Through rigorous rehabilitation and a 6-month throwing program, it’s not uncommon for pitchers to throw harder than they did before the injury.  The chances of a complete recovery after the surgery are estimated at 85 to 90 percent. Rehabilitation takes around 12 to 15 months for pitchers and about 6 months for position players.


The experience I’ve had with my pal TJ has been quite the travel. I suffered a blow-out of my UCL in the first game of Spring Training in 2010 with the Blue Jays. Two pitches into the first inning I felt and heard a loud pop.  I felt a burning sensation throughout my forearm and tricep. I saw my career flash before my eyes. I trotted over to the dugout and held my head in my hands. A week later I awoke to being drugged up on painkillers and a brace on my arm. Months had passed and I was advancing into my throwing program and eventually started to throw to hitters. I went from a soft-tossing lefty, to a power pitcher. My velocity had peaked at 96 mph, and I was overpowering hitters with ease.


Fifteen months after the first surgery, I felt that same pop. No rhyme or reason. Heeeere we go again. I saw renowned Tommy John specialist Dr. James Andrews the next day. In his own words, Dr. Andrews said, “I haven’t seen anything like this in 20 years.” Well that was refreshing. July 12th 2011. I found myself sitting in a hospital bed next to Terrell Owens, Matt Stafford and Joba Chamberlain. Nine months later, and here I am. Feeling as strong as ever, and close to facing hitters for the first time since July.


While the Tommy John procedure hasn’t created teams of Frankenstein-like monster men, it’s the saving grace of many pitchers across the game. Close to 100 of the 800 or so pitchers in the league have undergone the procedure and have seen miraculous comebacks. But to all the pitchers out there, note that there are always ways to help prevent the UCL from “blowing up.” Through strengthening the Rotator Cuff and shoulder, pressure will be relieved from the elbow. Consistent long toss and post-throw therapy seem to do the trick.


I would like to thank giving me the opportunity to share my story and the Blue Jays for sticking with me, even after everything I’ve gone through. I love all of my fans (the few I have) and interacting with them. I’ve become quite the Twitteraholic as of late and I can be followed at @j0hnny_A. I enjoy interacting with everyone, so give me a follow!  Until next time…. Johnny

***Thank you to Johnny Anderson for preparing this great feature on Tommy John Surgery for MLB reports (and the pictures/video used in todays’ feature)!  Johnny LOVES Twitter– so follow him ASAP!!!  2012 is a big year for Johnny as he continues on his road to recovery. Best of luck Johnny: we’re proud of ya!***


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