Though there are many questions for the Padres pertaining to their pitching staff entering 2017, the health of Tyson Ross is possibly the most compelling.
There is no doubt that starting pitching is an uncertain area at best for the San Diego Padres entering the winter after a last place finish. The team ranked 23rd in the area statistically in the 2016 regular season, which is already below average. But what has happened since the conclusion of the campaign has only made matters worse. Thus far, there doesn’t appear to be any positives to come away with.
In reality, there really isn’t any development regarding Ross’s ailments. But that’s exactly the problem, considering that the team expected to know his status by now. What is known though is that Ross has been seeing a specialist lately, and according to manager Andy Green, could have a small procedure done. If this is the case though, the former Oakland Athletic will easily be ready for the start of spring training in 2017.
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Ross pitched on opening day of 2016 after securing the coveted spot. Due to an inflamed shoulder however, the promising 29-year-old missed the remainder of the season. The best indication of the abilities Ross presents comes from previous seasons, especially 2015. This was his career best year in several categories, including his 212 strikeouts and 3.26 ERA over 196 innings pitched in 33 starts.
At this point, fans have mixed emotions when it comes to Ross. On one hand, the promising pitcher is still in his prime, and could be one of the more productive starters in San Diego’s rotation, if not the ace. But on the other hand, his contract expires after the 2017 season, and the future is very unstable due to his lingering injury dilemma.
As for now, team doctors are soon going to get together and determine the best course of action. More information will be known soon.
Padres’ fans may not know what they’re missing in Ross. He certainly had a lot of potential last he was seen, but no one can be sure how that has changed due to his injuries. One thing is for sure though, and that is that the instability of this rotation entering 2017 is unprecedented. Something must be done.