New York Yankees star rookie starter Masahiro Tanaka has a partially torn UC in his pitching elbow that will sideline the right-hander at least six weeks, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman confirmed Thursday.
Tanaka suffered the injury to the ulnar collateral ligament to his right arm but the injury will not require Tommy John surgery. Three doctors agreed that a platelet-rich plasma injection coupled with a physical rehab program will have the 25-year old back in the mound in less than 2 months.
“None of them recommend surgery at this time, and they’re all hopeful that in roughly, maybe a six-week period, that we will have a pitcher back if he responds positively,” Cashman said.
“That’s our hope,” Cashman said. “The ligament tear is considered small, and we have had success with pitchers that have had these, we have actually had them continue to throw without incident and they have gotten back to their normal levels.”
Tanaka experienced elbow discomfort in his last start against the Indians Tuesday night, prompting the Yankees to place him on the disabled list.
At the time of his injury, Tanaka was leading the Majors with 12 wins to go along with a 2.51 ERA and 135 strikeouts in 18 starts. The Yankees signed him to a seven-year, $155 million contract last summer.
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