Joakim Soria. Blake Wood. Danny Duffy. Now Felipe Paulino. It's a laundry list at this point, referring to the number of pitchers that the Kansas City Royals have placed on the Disabled List for Tommy John surgery. In fact, James Andrews might as well change his title to Royals Team Doctor.
The news is out that Paulino, the Royals best pitcher in 2012, will likely have to undergo Tommy John surgery after being diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament. This means that KC is once again struck by a major injury at a point in the season where they are finally turning the tide. The Royals are within five games of the AL Central lead and were just now getting Salvy Perez back behind the plate in the line-up.
While the pitching has been strong as of late with solid starts by Luis Mendoza and Bruce Chen among others, the loss of Paulino significantly sets back the rotation that was already thin to begin with. From their most promising pitching prospect to their best starter as well as their closer, the Royals have lost a lot of players to TJ.
Paulino was 3-1 with a 1.67 ERA for the Royals this season.