Horne to miss 2010 with rotation cuff tear

Open Thread: My RAB Fantasy Baseball League Team
Bronx Banter Breakdown on the Yanks' pitching

Let’s hop in the Wayback Machine and visit this post from August 2007. In it, Mike reported that Yankees farmhand Alan Horne had just been named the Eastern League’s pitcher of the year. Horne went 12-4 that year with a 3.11 ERA and 165 strike outs in 153.1 innings, and he seemed destined to be the Next Big Thing in the Bronx. Since then, though, he has suffered through one injury after another and has thrown just 100.2 innings over the last two years.

Today, we learn that 2010 will not be Alan Horne’s year either. He will, according to Chad Jennings, miss all of 2010 with a rotator cuff tear. Dr. James Andrews will perform the surgery — the second shoulder procedure of Horne’s career — on April 9, and his eventual return from baseball is up in the air. “I honestly have no idea until he gets in there and sees how bad things are and what time of repair has to be made,” Horne said. “All of that determines down time.” Horne is now 27 with years of injuries on his record. The clock is definitely ticking and not for the better.

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Open Thread: My RAB Fantasy Baseball League Team
Bronx Banter Breakdown on the Yanks' pitching
  • http://www.mystiqueandaura.com Steve H

    Damn, I had Chris Garcia in my pool.

  • r.w.g.

    I remember just a few seasons ago he was kind of one of the main guys in the system’s second tier, and looked like a decent enough prospect to come up and help out some.

    I’d be surprised if he makes the majors at this point.

  • Johan Iz My Brohan

    I never understood Horne, is it poor mechanics? Is it poor conditioning? What is it that has caused him to miss so much time with injuries?

    • http://www.theyankeeu.com/ Nostra-Artist

      There have always been whispers about his conditioning.

      • Cult of Basebaal

        Well, there’s body “conditioning” and throwing “conditioning”. If there were any throwing conditioning issues with Horne, I don’t remember hearing about them.

        As Jim Bouton insightfully stated, quite a while ago, it’s not like pitchers *run* the ball to the plate …

        • http://www.theyankeeu.com/ Nostra-Artist

          And as we learned with Wang last year, pitching on weak legs can render a pitcher ineffective, and get them injured. Wang said the Yanks told him not to work his legs in the off season, and he wound up hurting his shoulder as a result.

          As far as Bouton goes, you might as well bring up Cy Young. That was an eternity ago in Baseball evolution.

          • Cult of Basebaal

            Yeah, but we learned Wang’s lesson back when Dizzy Dean was pitching. Changes in pitching motions often produce injuries.

            Fat pitchers get hurt. Thin pitchers get hurt. *FIT* pitchers get hurt, because PITCHERS get hurt. And David Wells, Rick Reuschel, Fernando Valenzuela, Sid Fernandez and Livan Hernandez and a Thousand others all say Hi! for the fatties.

            • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

              I’m not sure what this has to do with the Artist’s point.

              Of course pitchers with all different builds get hurt. That doesn’t mean you don’t get all your pitchers in the best shape you can, because being in shape lessens the chance of injury.

              Nothing stops 100% of all injuries, but you do everything you can to lessen the chances.

              • http://www.theyankeeu.com/ Nostra-Artist

                Bingo. The stronger you are, the less strain on the ligaments and connective tissue. The muscles bear the load. Pitchers get hurt when they’re tired, that’s one big reason why we have pitch counts.

            • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

              David Wells is a poor choice to prove your point; he was known for shirking getting in shape; he was known for refusing to throw side sessions…and his balky back killed the Yanks in game 5 of the 2003 World Series, when he had to come out early in the game because of…a back injury.

              Are you saying he’s proof that a fat pitcher who’s not in shape is a good bet for a long, healthy career?

              • Cult of Basebaal

                I dunno, 239 wins, 17 seasons says being fat and out of shape isn’t *that* big of a hindrance to a long, successful *healthy* career.

                Don Mattingly had back problems. Was he fat and out of shape?

                Or did his body just have back problems.

                That’s the thing, isn’t it. You can posit things like “being in shape lessens injuries” but you can’t define “being in shape” as it pertains to a pitcher, and you CERTAINLY can’t define “being in shape” as something with any data to back it up.

                “Being in shape” lessens injuries SOUNDS right and maybe it is, but it’s simplifying something that’s both impressively complex AND uniquely personal. Maybe running IS what gave Ryan and Clemens their 27 and 24 years in the majors (respectively), but there are just as many pitchers who *didn’t* have the workout regime that they did and pitched nearly as many years.

                Pitching overhand is inherently unhealthy, it just IS, and EVERY pitcher’s body is different. I’d say “being in shape” means different things for different bodies at different times, and what works for one person may not only NOT work for someone else, but may actively be harmful. Roger Clemens’ workouts worked for Roger Clemens, but, as I said, Greg Maddux didn’t need them, and they may have been actually deleterious to a tall, gangly (stress on the knees)person like Randy Johnson .

                The body and the pitching motion are a harmonious whole, and a change in relative weakness OR strength of any component may throw off the process so that it places undue and unsupportable stress on any key component.

                We think that we know what “being in shape” means for pitching, but I’d say we really don’t. Our ability to study the interplay of the muscles and joints of the body is still relatively primitive and our database of knowledge abortive and punctuated. We just don’t have the history of taking before and after with test and control and being able to say, with even small sample sizes, THIS is what we think happens when variable X is changed or emphasized.

                If you want to believe that Alan Horne got hurt because he slacked off his conditioning (non-throwing component), then be my guest. I guess I’ll just say I just don’t know (and you CAN’T know, let alone prove), and it’s just as likely (HELLO, OCCAM’S RAZOR!!!) that his injury flowed from something that resulted from his PREVIOUS SURGERY, something from which he admits he NEVER FELT RIGHT AFTER.

                Eh, whatever …

        • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

          Yes, but with all due respect to Bouton, that’s a serious case of Boversimplification.

          Pitchers don’t run the ball to the plate, but they certainly use their leg muscles when pitching, and it’s absolutely a good idea to strengthen them. In Bouton’s day, before advanced exercise machines, running was one of the best ways of doing that, and increasing stamina at the same time.

          In fact, two of the longest pitching careers in recent memory were by two pitchers known to use, and strengthen, their legs: Nolan Ryan, and Roger Clemens. The fact that Clemens was also likely using PEDs doesn’t invalidate the point, which is that pitchers who use their legs often have longer careers, and fewer arm/shoulder injuries, than pitchers who rely to a larger extent on arm strength alone.

          • Cult of Basebaal

            Yup, legs are where it’s at … there’s only ONE way to skin a cat.

            /rolls eyes.

            That’s why Jamie Moyer is about to pitch the same number of seasons that Roger “Steroid Aided Running Fetish” Clemens did.

            24.

            Was Clemens better than Moyer?

            Absolutely.

            But since Greg “Doughboy for 23 seasons” Maddux was far better than both Clemens (sans STEROIDS) and Ryan, I’d say Bouton’s still got a point.

            • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

              Dude, you’re great at building up straw men. I never said legs are the only important thing, you did. So you’re rolling your eyes at what YOU said. And whether Moyer, Clemens, Maddux, whoever, was better, is totally and utterly irrelevent.

              You’re not addressing my points, you’re merely throwing up tangential, unrelated “my guy’s better than your guy” nonsense.

              It’s clear you’re just trolling, and not interested in a serious discussion. I’ve got better things to do.

              I’m out.

              • Cult of Basebaal

                Given my last 2 lengthy, considered responses … I’d say: Go get your shine box.

                • Cult of Basebaal

                  Well, now, that wasn’t right … I should have just said … GO POUND SAND.

                  OUT.

                • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

                  Right. You post your “lengthy, considered responses”, 50 minutes after I post a response saying I’m leaving, and then you have a hissy-cow when I don’t repond?

        • Big Juan

          Which is why pitchers don’t just run when they train. They train their core and hips to be strong and explosive by working on their fast-twitch muscles.

          Going for a jog and building up endurance is useless to pitchers. The running they do usually involves a series of sprints.

          So running is kind of irrelevant to this discussion.

          • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

            “In Bouton’s day, before advanced exercise machines, running was one of the best ways of…”

            I wasn’t advocating running in this day and age. I was advocating pitchers being in shape, and having strong legs.

            • Big Juan

              I know brotha. I was responding to Cult of Basebaal. I think I posted in the right spot…

              • http://cid-e3a022289d65b5c0.skydrive.live.com/self.aspx/Assorted/foul.jpg Andy (different one) in chilly NYC

                :-) Sorry.

                • Big Juan

                  No worries.

          • Cult of Basebaal

            Which is why pitchers don’t just run when they train. They train their core and hips to be strong and explosive by working on their fast-twitch muscles.

            Well, that sounds (seriously, NO snark) absolutely, LOGICALLY, true.

            I just ask this tiny, little thing … give me some proof.

            SHOW me that working your core and hips and training the body’s fast-twitch muscles has ANYTHING to do with reducing the number of pitcher related injuries.

            I mean, SHOW me a study, preferably with before and after imaging, and actual controls, that even somewhat supports it.

            I mean, MLB’s BIG business right? 6 BILLION dollars, right?

            So … If there was a revolution in training that would impact and reduce the number of days lost to injury for pitchers, that would be a big deal, right?

            And yet, if we’ve learned SO much about how training your core and hips and the body’s fast-twitch muscles are better for a pitcher’s health … why haven’t the number of days that pitchers have lost to injury (year-over-year) *declined* as we’ve gained such “insight”?

            It *sounds* like a great idea. Hell, I believe it *should* be true (don’t blame me, I dated a Pilates teacher for 3 years), but until someone actually *demonstrates* that it makes a difference from someone who just picks up the ball in January and starts throwing (as almost *EVERY* pitcher before 1990 did), it’s just a logical fallacy …

            • Big Juan

              This is going to sound a little stuck-up so I’m sorry in advance.

              I play college baseball — I watch our pitchers train like I described day in and day out. I’ve worked with a trainer who has worked with elite, professional level ballplayers who train that way.

              I’m not saying that every player does it this way, and yea, some distance running is going to be a part of their training so perhaps I overstated my point a bit. But the way I’ve been taught to train for baseball relies heavily on explosive training, often done with medicine balls, bands, and lifting/running in short bursts.

              • Cult of Basebaal

                Hell, I played college ball myself … and lord knows what we knew then wasn’t half of what we know now … or at least what we *think* we know now. But my overall point is that what we *think* we know now about how we should train *sounds* so much more advanced than what we did … and yet where is the proof (in durability and decreased injuries) than what we knew and did then?

                Proof isn’t in the thinking and sounding, it’s in the doing … and the *doing* in this case is pitching and avoiding injury … and I just haven’t seen the decrease in either number or severity that states that the modern methodology has somehow radically improved on the “antiquated” methods of training we had before …

                • Big Juan

                  Your use of asterisks greatly upsets me.

                  I get that you’re a skeptic. I can understand that point of view.

                  But my point of view is that it’s not the training of the pitchers — it’s how they develop their arms during adolescence that’s causing the majority of the problems.

                • Cult of Basebaal

                  My use of asterisks greatly upsets you?

                  Really?

                  Oh well, as Robinson Jeffers said, “be angry at the sun for setting, if these things anger you”

                  In any case, I would agree that we are woefully uniformed of the affects of adolescent throwing patterns on the adult pitcher, but I’m not sure how that relates to Alan Horne and how he was more or less responsible for his arm injuries through poor body conditioning, which was the insinuation laid before us …

                • Big Juan

                  You’re right. I did go off-topic a bit there. Though it is entirely possible Horne’s development as an adolescent led to some of his troubles.

                  Obviously, none of us have been in the gym with him and seen the type of work he puts in. So to speculate is rather pointless. I guess I’m just trying to say that it’s possible a large number of these pitchers are problems waiting to happen long before we are discussing their condition at the professional level.

            • Big Juan

              I think you may have sparked an idea for me to write something up about this also…

  • Paul

    Sucks for Horne big time. Watched him throw in college at UF. Kid was good. He cannt shake the injury bug for sure. Hoping for a great recovery.

  • Accent Shallow

    So he owes Chris Garcia $20?

    In all seriousness, I wish him the best. Here’s hoping he pulls a Gil Meche. (In coming back from shoulder surgery, not in signing with the Royals)

  • Ron

    Lets trade him to the White Sox for Beckham.

  • baseballnation

    All jokesaside, Hornes stuff was pretty electric before the injuries if some of you guys can remember and its a real shame he may not even return to baseball…Or if he does he may be a shell of his former self ala JB cox

  • Manimal

    Makes you wonder if there would’ve been a 3 man race for the 5th starter spot if he stayed healthy

  • CapitalT

    That’s really too bad. His father always seamed like a decent guy and kept everybody abreast on his previous rehabs on the “Around the Minors” site.

  • Bo

    And this is why you dont fall in love with prospects esp pitching prospects.