Twins righty Trevor May has been diagnosed with a stress fracture in his back, Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer-Press reports. His specific condition was diagnosed as a “pars defect” by specialist Dr. Robert Watkins.
It seems that the injury has been present for some time, with Watkins telling May that it had already undergone “cycles of healing” that never completed. “I just kept pitching on it and probably shouldn’t have,” said May. “It was an injury that was a little more serious than I thought it was.”
The 26-year-old said that he anticipates that an offseason of rest will cure the ailment, which is apparently similar to what Lucas Duda has struggled to return from this year. In May’s case, the hope is that he can rest for the remainder of the calendar year before undergoing a strength program and beginning to throw early in 2017.
May has shown plenty of promise despite an unsightly 5.27 ERA in 42 2/3 innings. Working exclusively from the bullpen, he has racked up 12.7 K/9 (with a 13.2% swinging strike rate) against 3.6 BB/9 while sitting at nearly 94 mph with his average fastball.
Home runs have been a problem — May has allowed homers on 15.2% of his flyballs and at a clip of nearly one-and-a-half per nine innings — but the overall numbers seemingly bode well. Of course, there’s an argument to be made that he ought to be given a chance to stick in the rotation before a relief role is set in stone. Regardless the Twins seem to have a useful arm on hand so long as May can progress as hoped from the back issue.