The news is worse than expected for Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler, who will have Tommy John surgery next week and miss not only this season, but least the first two months of 2016.
Bottom line: His torn ulnar collateral ligament is worse than expected.
Couple that with the previous revelation from GM Sandy Alderson that Wheeler pitched through pain last year, and one can’t help but wonder if something was missed from the two MRIs he had over the winter. If nothing else, a wrong decision made following hearing the results.
One has to wonder who was giving Wheeler advice.
Wheeler said it wasn’t until offseason MRIs, particularly one in January that showed a partially torn tendon attached to a bony deposit in the elbow. He eschewed surgery because the recovery time was put at up to six months and would have put this year in jeopardy. Instead, he opted for platelet-rich-plasma therapy and to pitch through the pain.
From his perspective, Wheeler has no problems with how he was handled last summer.
“I can’t complain about how the Mets handled me last year innings wise,’’ Wheeler told reporters. “I don’t have any complaints at all about how they handled me.’’
After Wheeler was shut down for last week’s start, Alderson finally ordered a MRI. Wheeler met with team physician David Altchek Wednesday and orthopedic specialist Dr. Andrews the following day. Wheeler insists this is when he learned of the full tear and need for surgery.
“Of course I’m nervous about it,’’ Wheeler said. “But you’ve got to do it and have that mindset when you’re coming back that you’re going to be 100 percent and better than you were before. I knew it probably eventually was going to happen. You aren’t meant to throw overhand and throw hard.’’
As details continue to emerge, it is obvious Wheeler gambled and lost.
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