The San Diego Padres are still taking people off the street to try out for pitching positions in the starting rotation. Okay, that’s completely untrue but they did come into the spring with a ton of candidates for what looked to be two open spots. One of the more promising young candidates to win a job was Casey Kelly. He has some experience and was one likely to get the position. It now appears he will have to wait.
Not only has he struggled this spring, the stats are deceptive because he hasn’t honestly pitched all that much. His elbow began to give him trouble and he hasn’t pitched for most of March. After having team doctors look at the elbow, it looks like Kelly’s road to the big impact season will have to go through Tommy-John surgery and recovery first.
Reports are that he might seek a second opinion but I don’t think he should push it. The honest truth is that he might not have won a position on the team anyway. What stinks is that he will have a year off instead of a year improving at the minor league level. If he got an opinion that said otherwise, that would be much worse.
He clearly has elbow trouble or team doctors wouldn’t be concerned. For them to publicly say they are concerned, you know that’s bad. The option of taking care of the elbow in another way besides surgery would just delay the inevitable and might really mess up his mechanics if he had to pitch around pain. It stinks for him and I hate to say it. Just go get the surgery and begin to rehab on schedule. It’s better to have it out of the way while he’s still young than to push himself to further harmful things by not getting it done.