Report: Astros Closer Roberto Osuna Needs Season-Ending Tommy John Surgery


Astros closer Roberto Osuna may have thrown his final pitch for the team.

Osuna's initial diagnosis for his sore right elbow is that he needs to undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery, according to Fox 26's Mark Berman, citing an MLB source.

Osuna is getting a second opinion, Berman reported.

Astros manager Dusty Baker did not appear optimistic in his weekly segment on the team's radio programming earlier Tuesday.

Osuna had an MRI in Houston on Monday after pulling himself from Saturday's extra-inning game against the Los Angeles Angels. Baker said it didn't look good for Osuna and that the team was bracing for bad news.

The Astros' pitching staff has been decimated by injuries. They are already without ace Justin Verlander, who is out with a forearm strain and could also miss the rest of the season. 

Of the 87.2 innings pitched by the Astros this season, 38.1 have been tossed by rookies. The 11-man group of rookies has combined for a 1.17 ERA (five earned runs).

Rookie left-handed pitcher Blake Taylor has five scoreless appearances to start his career, tossing 7.1 innings and allowing just two hits with nine strikeouts. Baker has been asked about Taylor as an option at closer if Osuna is out and Ryan Pressly's availability is questionable.

But Baker said Taylor couldn't be their left-handed specialist out of the bullpen, and the closer at the same time.

Taylor hasn't allowed a run since the Astros called him up -- not even in the eight innings he pitched in seven appearances during spring training and summer camp.

If Osuna does require surgery, it would likely keep him out through the 2021 season, which is his final year under contract with the Astros. 

This would also be the second time Osuna, 25, undergoes Tommy John surgery. He did so as a prospect in 2013.

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