DENVER (AP) — Colorado Rockies setup man Tyler Kinley will likely miss the rest of the season with a flexor tear in his right elbow.
Manager Bud Black said Wednesday that an MRI revealed the tear and a sprain in Kinley's pitching elbow. He's scheduled to undergo a procedure soon and Black did not rule out the need for Tommy John surgery.
“That answer will probably be clearer when he has the procedure, but I’m thinking this is probably going to cost him this season," Black said.
The 31-year-old Kinley was off to the best start of his career, sporting a 0.75 ERA over 25 appearances. He allowed just two earned runs and 21 hits in 24 innings, while striking out 27 and walking six.
He had earned the setup role ahead of closer Daniel Bard. Right-hander Alex Colomé, who has a 2.22 ERA in 25 games, is a candidate to take over that role.
“It’s frustrating for Tyler first and foremost because he was thrown the ball so well and he was in such a good place fundamentally with his mechanics and mentally with his confidence,” Black said. “His place on the team was trending upward, his career path. And a lot of that had to do with what he did this winter with some subtle changes to his delivery. So to have this happen, it’s such a bummer, man.”
Kinley, a 16th-round pick of Miami in 2013, is in his third season with Colorado after also pitching for the Marlins and Minnesota. He had nerve issues in his elbow a year ago, but Black said it's unrelated to this injury.
Kinley last pitched on June 8 and was placed on the 15-day injured list Sunday.
“From talking to Tyler there wasn’t a one-pitch event or a one-game event (that caused the injury),” Black said. “I’ve seen that over my career with pitchers where they throw one pitch and something tragic happens. But that was not the case.”
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