By: Steve Miller – Staff Writer
Update – April 20: Jerry Blevins should be out for a few months, not the entire season.
Craig Stammen and Jerry Blevins, the two former University of Dayton pitchers currently in the Major Leagues, have both suffered pitching arm injuries and will miss sizeable chunks of the season.
Stammen, a long reliever for the Washington Nationals, felt arm pain last week in a game and was evaluated by the team doctor. He is said to have a torn right flexor, which requires surgery.
According to a Washington Times article, the Nationals team doctor scheduled the surgery for Sunday, and the recovery time will be “dependent on the extent of the damage,” although Stammen will most likely be sidelined for the remainder of 2015.
Stammen has been a durable reliever for the Nationals over the past seven seasons. He has pitched nearly 500 innings in the Major Leagues and, aside from a two-week injury stint in 2009, has not missed significant playing time in his career.
“I’ve always been able to throw and throw and throw and never get sore,” Stammen said in the Times article, “The most frustrating part about it is that it finally caught up to me.”
Washington’s bullpen has been depleted since the end of last season. Rafael Soriano, who recorded 75 saves for the Nationals between 2013 and 2014, did not re-sign with the team in the offseason. Before this season began, Washington traded Blevins to the New York Mets and set-up man Tyler Clippard to the Oakland Athletics. Clippard’s replacement, Casey Janssen, is currently on the disabled list with rotator cuff tendonitis.
Blevins, in his first season with the Mets after coming over from division rival Washington, was struck with a line drive Sunday as he pitched against Dee Gordon of the Miami Marlins. The comebacker directly hit his left forearm, fracturing it. Blevins completed the play by picking up the ball and flipping to first base with his glove, but then exited the game.
No timetable for his recovery has been set. This season, Blevins has appeared in seven games for the Mets, pitching five innings in total. He has retired all 15 batters he has faced while striking out four.
After Blevins’ departure in the seventh inning of Sunday’s game, the Mets defeated the Marlins to finish off a four-game series sweep and their eighth consecutive victory. As of Sunday, they are 10-3 and lead the National League East division.
The Nationals are currently 6-7, good for third place in the National League East division.