The Arizona Diamondbacks haven’t had too many things go their way so far in 2014.
The run of bad luck started back in March, when the team got word that projected Opening Day starter Patrick Corbin had a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his left elbow and would miss the entire season after having Tommy John surgery.
It’s been just about a month since the 24-year-old pitcher had the surgery performed by Dr. James Andrews, and he’s well on the road to recovery.
“I get my brace off (Saturday),” Corbin told Burns and Gambo on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Friday. “The first month, it’s really slow. You’re just trying to get your full range of motion.
“Most of my extension and flexion is back, and I’ve just started lifting legs and body weight stuff for now.”
Corbin was one of 2013’s pleasant surprises for the D-backs. After claiming the fifth and final spot in the starting rotation in the spring, he went 11-1 in the first half of the season, and earned a spot on the National League All-Star team at the Midsummer Classic in New York.
He’s just one of a growing number of young star pitchers who have been sidelined with UCL injuries that have required surgery early this season. Joining Corbin on the unfortunate list are Oakland’s Jarrod Parker and A.J. Griffin, Brandon Beachy and Kris Medlen of Atlanta, San Diego’s Josh Johnson, Matt Moore of Tampa Bay, Yankees starter Ivan Nova and even Corbin’s teammate, David Hernandez.
“This year it seems like more and more guys are coming out with it and I don’t really know why or what the answer is for it,” Corbin said. “Personally for me, I try to get in the training room, stay healthy and do all the exercises you can to be healthy. But sometimes, it still happens to guys.
“I mean guys are throwing harder and harder and maybe that could have something to do with it.”
Corbin has been relying on another teammate, Daniel Hudson, who has undergone the surgery twice since August 2012, for a lot of advice.
“He’s a professional in rehab for Tommy John, this is his second one,” Corbin said. “He’s such a great guy and a hard worker.”
On top of the rigorous rehab Corbin must endure just to get back on the field, watching his current teammates struggle has been no picnic, either.
“I’m here to play baseball so it’s tough sitting and watching,” he said. “Offensively, we have as good a team as anyone else and hopefully our pitchers can come around and start throwing the ball better.”