Phillies righty Aaron Nola has been shut down for the remainder of the year after being diagnosed with a “low-grade” UCL sprain and flexor strain, as Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer was among those to tweet. He has received a platelet-rich plasma injection and is expected to be ready for Spring Training.
That’s certainly not the worst news possible, though it does seem that Nola’s previously-reported elbow discomfort is rooted in a real injury. Surgery isn’t on the table at this point, according to GM Matt Klentak, as MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki tweets. “At this time, nobody is talking about surgery,” Klentak said.
Nola, 23, had a solid 2015 season and looked great at the start of this campaign. But things turned in early June, and Nola’s final 33 frames were largely awful. All told, he owns a 4.78 ERA over 111 frames. On the other hand, the peripherals look quite nice: Nola posted 9.8 K/9 against just 2.4 BB/9 to go with a strong 55.2% groundball rate.
Philadelphia will certainly hope that Nola can rest up and take his anticipated place at the top of the team’s staff to open the 2017 season. His ability to stay healthy and make good on his considerable promise could go a long way toward determining the team’s timeline for returning to contention.