The Cool Kids go for Three Tommy Johns

Last week we found out Cory Luebke was set to have his second Tommy John surgery, ending his 2014 season. We grieved, we cursed, and now we’ve moved on (shhh . . . just repeat it . . . it’ll make things easier).

I went over the best and worst case scenarios for Luebke in last week’s post. The success rate for a pitcher coming back after a second TJ surgery is 60 percent, and he’ll most likely be a reliever. What’s the success rate for pitchers who’ve had THREE TJ surgeries? I have no idea, mainly because I just assumed a third Tommy John effectively ends a pitcher’s career.

Per usual, I was wrong. In doing some research, I came across this 2012 Washington Post piece on Jason Isringhausen. Isringhausen’s had three Tommy Johns. Holy fuck. I mean, you have to have serious #want and #rig to come back after three of those bastards.

Isringhausen had his latest surgery in 2009 and last pitched in 2012 with the LA Angels. He earned his 300th save with the Mets in 2011, which is pretty awesome. He’s the only pitcher who’s experienced any sort of success after a third Tommy John. The fact that he even came back is pretty remarkable.

What does this mean for the Padres? Well, we can’t be that far off from seeing this, right? I’d never want it to happen, but in case it does we know there’s precedent for a pitcher coming back. Shit, this was supposed to be a hopeful piece. Now I just depressed you more. Whatever, I live in Dodger country and have a shit-ton of homework. Go Padres!


I contribute when I contribute. Other thoughts on things that I think about can be found here. That’s a terrible “outro”. I’ll try to work on it.

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