The news is not surprising but is nonetheless disappointing. Green left Thursday’s game with forearm discomfort, with Boone relaying that the injury was feared to be significant. The club initially held off on making any declarative statements, though it seemed like a notable surgical procedure was on the table as they collected further medical opinions. Now, unfortunately, the severity of the situation has been agreed upon, with Green headed for the surgery that should keep him out of action for the next 12-18 months.
This is the second blow to the Yankees’ pitching staff in recent days, as it was announced yesterday that Luis Gil is also going under the knife for Tommy John. The club has had remarkable pitching health on the year overall, with their rotation front five of Gerrit Cole, Jordan Montgomery, Jameson Taillon, Luis Severino and Nestor Cortes Jr. making every start for the team, except for a single spot start from Gil. However, these two surgeries are still notable, taking out the club’s sixth starter and a key member of the relief corps.
Green has somewhat quietly been one of the most effective and durable relievers in the game over the past few years, having not been on the IL since 2016, until this week. His 326 relief innings pitched from 2016 to the present are bested by only 21 other pitchers in the league. He hasn’t just been taking mop-up duty either, as he has a 2.79 ERA out of the bullpen in his career, with a 32.8% strikeout rate and 5.9% walk rate, racking up 11 saves and 52 holds.
It’s also very unfortunate for Green personally, as he is set to reach free agency at season’s end. After years of being healthy and productive, suffering a serious injury just months before heading into the open market is incredibly unlucky timing, to state the obvious. He will now head into free agency with teams knowing he won’t be available until the middle of the 2023 campaign, at the earliest. It’s possible he will still garner interest on a back-loaded or incentive-laden contract, such as those recently signed by Ken Giles, Kirby Yates or Tommy Kahnle., who were also working their way back from Tommy John when their contracts were signed.