Good things have come few and far between for the beleaguered Oakland Athletics; under manager Mark Kotsay’s leadership, the A’s have posted a 34.1 percent winning percentage. It’s difficult to rag too much on the Athletics given their focus is on developing their young players, one of whom is Mason Miller, their third round draft pick in 2021, who’s shown nothing but promise on the back of his incredible stuff.
However, it seemed like injuries were set to derail Miller’s rapid ascent, as the A’s reported that the 24-year old starting pitcher has been dealing with a flexor muscle issue in his right elbow. Thankfully for the A’s, the injury doesn’t look like it’s as serious as they initially thought.
According to Martin Gallegos, A’s beat reporter for MLB.com, Mark Kotsay revealed that the MRI results on Mason Miller’s elbow were “clean structurally”. As a result, the A’s will not need to put the impressive youngster on the injured list and that it’s now a matter of pain tolerance and recovery from the elbow soreness Miller is currently feeling at the moment. If all goes to plan, Miller could be back playing catch as soon as Friday.
Miller rapidly progressed through the minors, which is what the A’s envisioned when they took the four-year college pitcher not even two years ago. The A’s future star boasts an electric, 100-mph fastball, which he throws more than half the time, leading to immense success thus far in his brief big league career. Through four starts and 21.1 innings pitched, Miller has posted a 3.38 ERA and an impressive 25.9 percent strikeout rate.
Alas, Mason Miller is yet to win his first MLB start, simply because the A’s haven’t provided Miller with the run support necessary. His seven-inning start against the Seattle Mariners, despite coming with a less-than-ideal strikeout to walk ratio, is the stuff only a few 24-year old rookie pitchers can dream of.
The A’s may be a ways away from contention, but the last thing they will need is a major injury to one of the building blocks of their rebuild. And based off this news, it looks like they dodged a major bullet.
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