The Atlanta Braves‘ fears, about the health of promising rookie Arodys Vizcaino, were realized with the breaking news that he needs to have Tommy John surgery on Tuesday. He will miss the entire 2012 season. The recovery time for this injury is typically 12 months, though there have been some that have returned faster. This is definitely a blow to the Atlanta Braves, as they were hoping to have him add depth to their bullpen for the upcoming season.
Baseball America ranked Vizcaino as the Braves’ second best prospect and the 40th best prospect overall. I had Vizcaino ranked as the Braves’ third best prospect in December here. Regardless, Vizcaino was ranked high in every prospect list for the Atlanta Braves.
What makes his injury so painful, was he was penciled into the bullpen for the upcoming season before Spring Training began. He moved through the Braves’ farm system last season rapidly, once he was moved into the bullpen from the starting rotation.
The Braves were going to add Vizcaino to the core of Craig Kimbrel, Jonny Venters, Eric O’Flaherty and Kris Medlen to make their bullpen more formidable and dominant with quality relievers. His presence in the bullpen would help the Braves, or more specifically Fredi Gonzalez, not overwork Kimbrel, Venters and O’Flaherty.
This loss is now another person’s gain. There will now be three bullpen spots available for the 2012 season.