Multiple sources have confirmed that Luke Hochevar will receive Tommy John surgery.
Luke Hochevar will have Tommy John surgery, Yost says.
— Andy McCullough (@McCulloughStar) March 7, 2014
It is devastating news for Hochevar, who finally figured out how to pitch at the major league level, but who will be on the wrong side of thirty when he returns to baseball. He had a 1.92 ERA in 70 2/3 innings pitched last season and ended the season as the bullpen’s setup man. He was the second best reliever on the team behind closer Greg Holland.
He was a force to be reckoned with out of the bullpen. His fastball touched 97-98 and because he never faced a lineup more than once, no one could figure out his secondary arsenal. A pitcher with a sub-2.00 ERA would be a loss to any team, including the Royals, but at least they have an extremely deep bullpen.
The Royals had originally indicated that they were hopeful that Hochevar would return after a few months. However, once they announced that he had a significant tear to UCL, Tommy John surgery was inevitable.
Tommy John recovery is so long and grueling (15 months or so) that Sam Mellinger assumes that the surgery it also spells the end of his tenure as a Kansas City Royal.
Quite possible Hochevar has thrown his last pitch for the Royals, whether Yost likes the question or not.
— Sam Mellinger (@mellinger) March 7, 2014
The Royals will have to choose a new primary setup man from the likes of Aaron Crow, Wade Davis, Tim Collins, Kelvin Herrera, or Louis Coleman. Yost has also made it clear that he wouldn’t mind seeing Danny Duffy or Yordano Ventura in the bullpen. The Royals still have an incredible amount of depth stacked up in their AAA-Omaha affiliate. It’s so stacked that, even with the injury to Luke Hochevar, left-hander Donnie Joseph may not make the club. Stacked.
This also means that bloggers will run low on material this year. Hoch has been the subject of hundreds of articles on most baseball sites and, as a content-generator, he was nearly unparalleled. No longer will we see #HochevarMeltDownInning on Twitter. Nor will we see tweets expressing their new-found love for Hochevar and his untouchable stuff from the pen.