The D-Backs announced on Wednesday that veteran reliever Mark Melancon would miss the start of the season after experiencing shoulder discomfort. Manager Torey Lovullo provided a disheartening update on Thursday afternoon. The four-time All-Star will receive a platelet-rich plasma injection to address a subscapularis strain, an injury the skipper said will be measured in “months, not weeks” (link via Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic).
Signed to a two-year, $14MM free agent contract over the 2021-22 offseason, Melancon had a rough first season in the desert. The righty posted a 4.66 ERA through 56 innings. It was his worst run prevention mark in a decade, while his 14.2% strikeout rate was his lowest since his abbreviated rookie season in 2009. His 44.1% grounder percentage was the worst of his career. The D-Backs pulled Melancon from the closing role towards the tail end of the season.
His hope for a bounceback showing has been set back out of the gate. There’s some hope the PRP injection can get him back on track eventually but it now seems that’s a midseason goal. Given the stated timeline, the 14-year MLB veteran figures to wind up on the 60-day injured list whenever the club needs a 40-man roster spot.
Melancon isn’t the only Arizona reliever dealing with a concerning shoulder issue. Right-hander Corbin Martin left last night’s Spring Training contest with an injury. Lovullo told reporters the 27-year-old was going for imaging on Thursday (relayed by Steve Gilbert of MLB.com). The club won’t know a timetable for Martin’s return until there’s more clarity on the diagnosis, yet it’s an obviously unfortunate situation for a pitcher still looking to establish himself at the MLB level.
A former second-round pick of the Astros, Martin reached the majors with Houston two years after being drafted. He made five starts and had been optioned back to Triple-A when he required Tommy John surgery in July 2019. Within a few weeks, Houston dealt him as one of four players in the deadline blockbuster to acquire Zack Greinke. A top 100 caliber prospect at the time, Martin was arguably the headliner of a package that included former first-rounders J.B. Bukauskas and Seth Beer, as well as infielder Josh Rojas (who has been the most successful of the bunch to this point).
Martin hasn’t established himself in the wake of that surgery, bouncing on and off the active roster for the past couple seasons. He allowed a 4.84 ERA in 22 1/3 MLB innings last season and was hit hard for a 6.08 ERA over 17 Triple-A starts. This spring, the D-Backs moved him to relief in an effort to get him on track. He’d gotten off to a nice start this spring, striking out nine with only a pair of walks in 5 2/3 frames before the injury.
Peter Piper, your peck of pickled peppers are picked.
Who ends ’23 with the most saves for the Snakes? Legitimate betting question…
That’s my first inclination… glad to hear you confirm it! Thanks broham
I kinda think Chafin just based on MLB experience.
Also I’m assuming he’s going to get the first shot initially because he has the bigger contract, more MLB pedigree etc… but it may be they go L/R situationally with Chafin/McGough and play matchups right from the start so it could be either.
McGough had 69 Saves in Japan over the past two seasons so he has the experience to do it, we’ll just have to see if it carries over to MLB.
McGough’s NPB numbers are legit, it’s just a different league. Padres initially thought Robert Suarez could go right into closing last year and he blew a save against the Dbacks on opening day. It took him a bit to get settled into the MLB, so I could see that being the case for McGough since he hasn’t thrown in the MLB in like 7 years.
That said Chafin is adjusting to the pitch clock so he’s working through some stuff as well. Could be anyone’s job
I’m a Cubs and Dodgers fan, but I admire Arizona’s young talent. Moreno, Walker, Marte, Carroll, Thomas, Rojas, McCarthy, Lawlar, Jones.
Nothing was more painful last year than watching Mark Melancon and Ian Kennedy. I watched a lot of Diamondbacks games on MLB.com and both completely failed the eye test. Clearly Chafin is an upgrade, he is a solid asset. I have not seen McGough, but everything that I have read sounds promising.
I also hope Mantiply gets his first half mojo back. He earned his All-Star trip in the first half of the season, but he was below average in the second half.
You lost me at “I’m a Cubs AND Dodgers fan.”
He’s done. Good career. He’ll be in no rush to comeback and no one should blame him.
He should do all can to get back on the mound and help the team he signed a two year contract with. He might have had a good career but that doesn’t mean he should kick back and collect a paycheck. Dbacks didn’t have that in mind when they agreed to terms with him and they have to uphold their end of the deal. This scenario is all to common in baseball from the players side.
I’d love to hear some examples of these all-too-common players you’re talking about
Sign a big contract and some go to crap. You have had to notice that and maybe thought that sometime in your life? Maybe?
At soon to be 38 i could definitely see this season being the end of the line for Melancon. Hopefully he’s able to contribute something to the team before the season is over.
As a human it hurts me to see Melancon hurt and unable to play. As a Dbacks fan, I couldn’t be happier.
Angels & NL West
Hope Martin is ok. I’m anxious to see what he can do in a RP role this season. Early reports and results have been encouraging.
Well, that’s two 40-man spots open
Will forever shake my head that steroids, which cause the body to create platelet rich plasma, are banned but direct injection of platelet rich plasma is cool.