Sep 05, 2011; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Atlanta Braves pitcher Arodys Vizcaino (59) delivers to the plate during the eighth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies defeated the Braves 9-0. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

Arodys Vizcaino suffering elbow inflammation


*Update*
According to Mark Bowman, Vizcaino had a partial ligament tear in his elbow back in 2010. At first it seemed he would need Tommy John surgery but after resting for a while, the club/Vizcaino decided he didn’t need it. That decision may prove costly now.

It seems we are constantly dealing with injuries in Braves world but usually it is with the older guys or Jair Jurrjens. Apparently Arodys Vizcaino has been having pain in his elbow and an MRI shows some inflammation:

Arodys Vizcaino has not pitched since Sunday because of discomfort in his right elbow.  An MRI exam showed inflammation around the elbow.  The 21-year-old reliever will rest a few more days before being reevaluated.  But for now, the team does not seem too concerned.

Back in 2010 Vizcaino had a similar issue with his elbow, and as Nathanial Stoltz (@stoltz_baseball) pointed out it is “quite believable given size and torque in the motion.”

Nathanial is right on the money on this one. Check this video out to see for yourself. He does have a strange arm slot, and with the velocity he throws at (mid to upper 90′s) no wonder he is having problems. Also check out this wonderful home-made video of Viz making Bryce Harper look really dumb.

I am not sure how the Braves can be “not too concerned” about this. It is his second issue with the elbow and he is supposed to be an important piece in the bullpen this year. He has the potential to hang with The Untouchables–Kimbrel, Venters, and O’Flaherty–and give the team some innings in high-leverage situations. The bullpen will still be good if he isn’t there for a period of time, but it might not be the elite force we thought it to be. Medlen will still be there to give us some innnings, and we have a lot of interesting young options but  none of them were ever the second ranked starting pitcher in the organization like Arodys was.

Stay tuned for more information as it comes out.

 

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  • FredOwens

    Always thought the Yanks let go of him too easy. Watching him pitch I thought he was TJ waiting to happen or worse. Hope I am wrong but I would probably have packaged and traded him for Jones as I think he’ll always be at risk for a career ending  injury.

  • Big Bad Bob

     @FredOwens Back in the olden days, when I was a kid, there were a lot of pitchers that threw from the 3/4 arm slot. Since I was a child in the 50′s, I never thought much about the possibility of arm injuries.
    Looking back, though, I see that a lot of those 3/4 arm slot guys had short MLB careers. Since there was no internet or cable TV, and the fact that TJ surgery hadn’t been thiught of, it’s no wonder that they seemed to simply disappear.
    How much was attributed to injury because of their arm slot can only be speculated upon. However, it is intersting to note that the 3/4 arm slot is rarer today and, subsequently, arm injuries are rarely career ending.
    Could the arm slot have anything to do with his ligament injury? If so, would a change in his delivery “help” allieviate the strain?
    Any comments from people more knowledable on the subject would be greatly appreciated.

  • leetro

     @Big Bad Bob I do think the 3/4 arm slot has more risk for elbow injury.  Pitchers in that slot tend to lead with their elbow too much, causing increased strain on the elbow (see Zumaya).  That does not look to be the case with Vizcaino, however.  Throwing over-the-top does alleviate elbow problems, but I believe it creates more shoulder problems, especially for someone who doesn’t naturally throw from that slot.

  • FredOwens

     @Big Bad Bob Every arm slot except sidearm and underhand is an unnatural slot that stresses either the shoulder or the elbow. The thing that hurts Vizcaino and a lot of young pitchers today is that unlike when you and I were young they start throwing breaking balls and cutters before their arm is ready. When I played no one threw breaking balls until they were juniors or seniors. In fact if a manager saw a pitcher below Babe Ruth league throwing one they removed them from the game. Yea we all threw them warming up but there was less stress and no one I knew or played with ever had elbow surgery. (Of course I’m older than dirt)  In 2008 John’s Hopkins released a study saying that 1/3 of TJ surgeries were high school students. Requiring surgery so young means they threw a lot of them. Viz has had shoulder and elbow trouble his whole career. I suspect the pain now is worse because of the damage done when he was younger and no arm slot change will fix it. 

  • Big Bad Bob

     @FredOwens I agree with you. I remember Little League in the 50′s. We had one pitcher that was experimenting on a change-up and the coach freaked! Needless to say, he never threw that pitch near the field again. He probably threw it at home, but coaches were very protective back then.
    Getting back to the arm slot, though, I was wondering if that could have been the reason for so many old timers simply disappearing from the game. You rarely see anyone throw 3/4 arm, nowadays.

  • FredOwens

     @Big Bad Bob there are lots of 3/4 throwers out there. You might want to read this sit, he talks about arm slot and it’s lack of effect on the elbow.  http://www.chrisoleary.com/projects/PitchingMechanics101/Essays/PitchingMechanics.html