Dinelson Lamet’s right arm has been an injury concern for the better part of a year, but the Padres hurler has now hit another roadblock in his recovery from forearm inflammation. Manager Jayce Tingler told reporters (including The Athletic’s Dennis Lin) that Lamet underwent a procedure yesterday to have a hip infection “cleaned out,” and it will result in more missed time. “It’s gonna be a little while, because they had to go in and cut some things out,” Tingler said. “Is that a week or 10-day setback? I don’t know yet.”
While Tingler’s mention of a 7-10 day timeframe would seemingly indicate that this might not be a major delay for Lamet, there is obviously still uncertainly, considering that Lamet will have to recover from this procedure on top of his planned forearm rehab. Lamet began a minor league rehab assignment on August 4 that has consisted of one in-game appearance and a pair of live batting practice sessions. Since the Padres were already planning to bring Lamet back as a reliever rather than as a starter, he didn’t need to build as much strength in his arm, so there was some thought that Lamet might have been activated off the injured list within a week or so.
Lamet suffered a UCL strain near the end of last season, which delayed his 2021 season debut until April 21. From there, he had a 10-day stint on the IL due to forearm inflammation prior to his current injured list visit, which began on June 27. All in all, Lamet has tossed only 34 1/3 innings, and his absences have been a major factor in the Padres’ lack of rotation depth.
When Lamet has pitched, he has performed pretty well — a 3.67 ERA/3.88 SIERA and above-average strikeout and walk rates, though opposing batters were making a lot of hard contact against the right-hander’s offerings. While it represents a step backwards from Lamet’s outstanding 2020 numbers, it certainly stands to reason that he can be a big weapon out of San Diego’s bullpen, once he eventually gets back onto a big league mound.