Tigers ace Michael Fulmer likely needs Tommy John surgery, will miss entire 2019 season

The Tigers have gone 64-98 in each of the past two seasons and don’t look much better heading to 2019. The news gets worse from here, as the club has announced some bad news regarding the status of their No. 1 starting pitcher Michael Fulmer

It’s hard to see a third opinion being much different, especially when the esteemed Dr. James Andrews has already taken a look. We’ve seen players like Garrett Richards try to avoid Tommy John surgery in the past only to end up needing it anyway. Quite simply: Fulmer’s probably going to have the procedure, it’s just a matter of when. 

Fulmer, 26, won the AL Rookie of the Year in 2016 and was an All-Star in 2017, but he was not good last year. He went 3-12 with a 4.69 ERA and 1.32 WHIP in 132 1/3 innings. In his three years, he hasn’t made more than 26 starts and his career high in innings is 164 2/3. Now he’s probably going to be out until sometime after the start of next season and is due to hit free agency after 2022. 

It’s fair to ask if the Tigers have missed their window to get back good value for Fulmer in a possible trade. They could have gotten a big, prospect-heavy package last offseason and probably something of good value back in November this offseason. Instead, their best chance to supplement the rebuild via trade right now would be dealing Nick Castellanos, who is a good hitter but a defensive liability who hits free agency after this season. 

Categories: National Sports

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