Friday, November 03, 2006

Bad news for Twins & their phenom hurler Liriano

Minnesota Twins rookie lefty Francisco Liriano, considered a front-runner for the Rookie of the Year award before he went down with arm troubles in August, has been told he will need Tommy John surgery on his elbow and is expected to miss the entire 2007 season.

This comes as a huge blow to the Twins, who had high hopes for the deadly combo of Johan Cy-tana and Liriano leading the way to playoff glory in the coming years. Once Liriano, a hard-throwing 23-year-old from the Dominican who went 12-3 with a 2.16 ERA before getting hurt, went down for good in September after attempting an aborted comeback the Twins rotation was exposed for being extremely thin. When Santana lost the first game of the ALDS against the A's the Twinks had no shot at defeating the deeply-staffed Oakland team.
So why do all these promising young hurlers become afflicted with serious arm ailments early in their careers? Todd Van Poppel, Jason Isringhausen, Kerry Wood, Mark Prior & Johnathan Papelbon, all hard-throwing young pitchers who have seen their careers derailed by devastating arm/shoulder/elbow problems. Some, like Izzy, have gone on to recover from their surgery 7 have a productive career. Other, like Wood & prior, seem unlike of ever regaining their once unhittable pre-injury form.

And still others, like Liriano and fellow ROY candidate Papelbon, will have to wait & see if they come through their dark times unscathed.

But all I know is someone has got to be responsible for preventing these injuries from ocurring so often to keep from destroying the careers of the games brightest young stars.

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