The James Kaprielian saga continues, and the Yankees finally have an update, and its not a good one.
The former first round pick missed all of last season due to a flexor tendon sprain, which did not require surgery. However, his rehab process seems unsuccessful as Kaprielian was recently placed on the minor-league disabled list with elbow soreness.
It now appears that the 23-year-old top prospect is considering elbow surgery, after being seen by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles on Tuesday. The specifics of the surgery remain unclear, but Yankees GM Brian Cashman, in speaking with the media, indicated this would be the worst case scenario. Tommy John surgery would be another major set back for Kaprielian should he elect to go that route.
“We’ve made our assessment and our recommendation,” Cashman said. “Clearly you don’t bounce around the country if a surgical option isn’t on the table.”
This is as far as Cashman has elaborated, as he did not specify as to what his recommendation was. However, he said that the injury is a recurrence of the right flexor tendon strain that limited Kaprielian to just three starts last year.
“We pointed out, you can have the surgical option, or you can try to continue to pitch through it. He’s basically going to have a day or two to talk to his father and his family and his agency and then get back to us with what he would like to see happen.”
“Ultimately, at this point, the rehab process hasn’t been successful without having a continued issue,” Cashman said. “He’s facing some decisions.”
“You see the ability that he possesses, but you have to be healthy to be able to harness it,” Cashman said. “You know it’s there, and at some point we’re looking forward to having it for an extended period of time.”
“Injuries are also part of the game, and you have to deal with them. Unfortunately right now, the front of his pro career has had some injuries with that elbow, but he has an opportunity to have a very long career regardless.”
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