The Padres pitching staff has been devastated with injuries. They’ve had DL
stints, missed starts, and extra days off. Now, it seems, two more key components of the Padres staff are going to be added to the list. Cory Luebke has already been placed on the 15-day Disable List, and Huston Street had to exit yesterday’s game with what is being described as a right shoulder strain.
Yesterday, news broke that Luebke may be faced with season-ending Tommy John surgery. Bill Center of the Union Tribune said, “Apparently, an MRI exam conducted Wednesday showed damage to the ulnar collateral ligament in Luebke’s elbow as well damage to the flexor tendon and fluid in the elbow.”
Luebke will be getting a second opinion this weekend and will discuss his options with the team. Should he have to undergo Tommy John surgery, Luebke will be out the remainder of the season and likely the first part of next season. The average return time from Tommy John surgery is 12-18 months. Edinson Volquez, while with Cincinnati, returned after just 11 months. Stephen Strasburg of the Nationals returned after about 12 months.
Huston Street had to exit last night’s game in the 10th inning with pain in his shoulder. As of now, the team is calling it a posterior strain of the right shoulder. Street will have an MRI today. “You know when something is not right. I just said, ‘Something in there is not right.’ But I don’t think it’s anything major,” Street said after the game.
With Dustin Moseley’s season already done, Cory Luebke’s season in the balance, and Tim Stauffer’s season yet to begin, the Padres can ill-afford more injuries to their pitching staff. However, it doesn’t look like this year’s team posed much of a threat to the National League West. The injuries coming in 2012 as opposed to 2013 could be a blessing for a team just waiting for their talented prospects to develop and contirbute at the Major League level.
The injuries will surely allow the team to take a much earlier than expected look at some of their young pitchers. They’ve already seen Joe Wieland in four starts, Anthony Bass has been strong, and now they may need to look for additional help from the minor league ranks.
Luebke, at the time of his injury, was 3-1 (the only Padres starter with a winning record) with a 2.61 ERA. After last night’s appearance, Street has a 0.97 ERA and 4 saves.
The Padres have desimated more than just about any other team this season with injuries. Yet, those filling in have stepped up and provided the team a much needed boost. Depending on Casey Kelly’s recovery from an elbow strain, he may be the next Padres’ propsect asked to step up and fill in. For now, though, the Padres are just focusing on trying to find ways to win. Injuries will surely not help that.