Padres left-hander Adrian Morejon will undergo Tommy John surgery, Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. He’ll miss the rest of this season and likely a sizable portion of next year as a result.
Morejon last appeared for the Padres on April 11, when he departed a start against the Rangers during the first inning with a left forearm strain. A Tommy John procedure looked like a realistic possibility for the 22-year-old at that point, and that’s unfortunately the route he will have to take.
Morejon, a Cuba native, signed an eyebrow-raising $11MM bonus with the Padres in 2016 and has since ranked among Baseball America’s top 100 prospects on an annual basis. However, Morejon hasn’t yet taken on a significant workload during a professional season, having never thrown more than 65 1/3 innings in an individual year. He combined for 27 1/3 major league innings as a swingman from 2019-20 before earning a rotation spot heading into this season with 14 frames of 3.21 ERA ball and 17 strikeouts in spring training. But Morejon’s 2021 will now end after just two starts and 4 2/3 innings.
The season-long loss of Morejon is obviously a blow to the Padres’ depth, but the team is still in enviable shape in its rotation. Yu Darvish, Blake Snell, Joe Musgrove, Dinelson Lamet, Chris Paddack and Ryan Weathers are their top options in the majors, and elite prospect MacKenzie Gore could debut sometime this season.