View Full Version : Asians and Tommy John surgery
06-05-2013, 07:15 PM
I tried to google this but came up with NSFW content so my question is can anyone recall an Asian pitcher having Tommy John surgery before?
Maybe the U.S. should look more into how Japan handles its pitchers with higher pitch counts and an extra day of rest between starts.
Or maybe there are cases and they're all just weeded out before they come over here.
06-05-2013, 07:58 PM
I think this is the case of small sample size and selective memory since there are only a handful of successful Asian pitchers in the majors.
Dice K had arm problems for awhile and later got TJ. Fujikawa (possible Cubs closer) is headed for TJ. Wang (Taiwan) completely shredded his arm but didn't have TJ I don't think. I'm sure there are a lot more examples but they were fringy MLB'ers that are easily forgotten about.
06-05-2013, 07:59 PM
Note the way the game is played, though, too. We have morphed since the 1970s/80s into a fastball-dominated pitching culture. The human arm is simply not made to throw a baseball at 90+ mph velocity over and over for extended amounts of time. We remember guys like Nolan Ryan and Bob Feller because their velocity was so incredibly rare in their eras. Now, virtually every team has a guy who could touch triple digits on a radar gun.
Japanese baseball in general (obviously there are exceptions) is played station-to-station with lots of contact-driven offense, not power-driven offense. Because of that, pitchers throw a lot more junk pitches in order to affect more awkward contact. While you hear that throwing a ton of sliders kills arms, there's a big difference in an American slider and a Japanese slider in terms of velocity and, obviously, stress on the arm.
06-05-2013, 08:51 PM
Go to Google
"Japanese pitcher elbow surgery"
see many results.
06-10-2013, 10:16 PM
Were you using google images?