Surgery recommended for Ivan Nova following second opinion


After being re-evaluated by team doctor Dr. Ahmad on Monday, surgery has been recommended for Ivan Nova‘s partially torn ulnar collateral ligament, the Yankees announced. An MRI arthrogram confirmed the original diagnosis.

Nova, 27, left Saturday’s start with a sore elbow and initial tests revealed the partial UCL tear. Rest and rehab never seems to work, and once the ligament starts tearing, Tommy John surgery becomes inevitable. Now that it has been officially recommended by the team doctor, it’s just a matter of setting a date and going under the knife. The procedure will sideline Nova for 12-18 months. Sucks.

Categories : Asides, Injuries


  1. I'm One says:

    This was expected, but still sucks!

  2. Yankeefan91 says:

    I think well make a trade at the deadline for a starter.

  3. Algernon Blackwood says:

    That’s to bad. And shame on ‘Peter’ for calling him a faker in the game thread.

    • Havok9120 says:

      Wait, that actually happened?


    • Worst Fans In Baseball says:

      Not gonna lie, not having watched the game, when I heard Nova came out in the 5th and then went on the 15 day I thought that this was his/the Yankees way of giving him his annual Scranton vacation this year…sadly I was wrong.

  4. Jorge Steinbrenner says:

    Yeah, no one’s been able to successfully rehab. Just get it done. We’ll still be here when you get back, Ivan.

  5. Mikhel says:

    Sad for Nova, it has to be hell for him right now that even when “Tommy John Surgery” is effective in a lot of cases, there is a chance he never gets to pitch again.

    Ojalá todo salga bien para él (I hope everything goes fine for him).

  6. Reggie C. says:

    Time to fire up the Cliff Lee bad trade ideas generator!

    • Havok9120 says:

      We’ve already had a few gems. I’m sure the Game Thread will bring more.

      And just wait until Nuno has a bad start. They generator will overload.

    • I'm One says:

      Have to factor in that Lee will be 36 this season, only has 1+ years left on his contract and that you’re dealing with Ruben Amaro. Offer him a PTBNL.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

      I’ll spot you a “‘somebody says Luis Torrens and Gosuke Katoh’ and another guy says ‘the Yanks hang up!’”

    • vin says:

      Stephen Who?

      Bring me all the Cliff Lee’s!!!!1!!

  7. W.B. Mason Williams says:

    I’d like to thank the good Lord for starting pitching depth.

    Not that I want anyone to get injured, but it’s probably the most precious commodity in the young season so far, considering all the injuries we’ve seen around the league.

  8. RetroRob says:

    I wouldn’t expect Nova to be back fully until 2016. I’m sure he’ll pitch next year, but have low expectations for results. Tough timing for him. Have to wonder if he’ll even make it back to the Yankees rotation if they go out and sign a pithcher and Banuelos progresses.

  9. Darren says:

    Just to confirm, when you say that “surgery has been recommended”, does that 100% mean Tommy John surgery, or is any other type of less invasive surgery an option?

  10. Derek Jeter says:

    Bring Nick Swisher back. He pitched well for us a few years ago. Plus he can hit!!

  11. Get well soon Ivan! See you in September 2015!

  12. Steinbrenner's Ghost says:

    Well, atleast it was Tommy John and not Tommy Smith/John Carlos surgery.

  13. New Guy says:

    My initials are TJS. Good thing I’m not a pitcher, or that’d be a head line waiting to happen. Feel bad for Nova. I’ve loved him ever since his start against Baltimore last year around the 4th of July. Just dominant.

  14. Bronx Boy says:

    What happened to all these guys before ‘Tommy John’ was around as a procedure? Good luck, Ivan.

    • Jorge Steinbrenner says:

      You never heard from them again.

    • Worst Fans In Baseball says:

      A lifetime of sitting on a barstool, reciting the “I coulda been a contenda!” speech from On the Waterfront to anyone who will listen over a beer.

      • Jorge Steinbrenner says:


        My eighth grade teacher made us watch that movie and told us we’d remember that line for the rest of our lives. He was right.

    • Steinbrenner's Ghost says:

      some became knuckleball pitchers.

      the game was different back then. batters weren’t trying to drive ever ball, they focused more on making contact. Pitchers weren’t throwing hard, rather pitching to contact, inducing grounders with breaking balls.

      About a year or two ago some cable channel was replaying the 1969 Mets world series games vs Baltimore and it was weird watching such a different style of play

    • W.B. Mason Williams says:

      They got the much less popular and less well-known “Johnny Tom” surgery…

  15. mike says:

    Masterson, Max and Shields all just dialed their real estate agents looking for places in Rye and the UES.

  16. Matt says:

    The amount of TJS happening is absolutely ridiculous. Nova becomes the 15th pitcher to undergo TJS in just THIS SEASON. It really shows you that the human arm is not meant to throw a ball that many times and at that angle.

    • RetroRob says:

      Meanwhile, the surgery is much more a rarity in Japan.

      Is it because their starters only pitch once a week?

      Is it because they face less demaning line ups?

      Is it because their work load means those most likely to blow their arms out do so before they make the Japanese pro leagues?

      Is it because on average they don’t throw as hard?

      Is it because their starters throw more pitches, which means MLB’s approach is all wrong in the States?

      Could be a little bit of it all? There has to be a better way.

  17. TWTR says:

    Good luck, Nova.

  18. Yan Solo says:

    What’s really sickening is that (and I don’t know if this is still a trend or not, but it was for a while at the least…) parents were having their teenage boys get Tommy John surgery BEFORE they even showed any sign of an injury in their arms. Apparently (and hopefully my memory serves me correctly from the special news report I saw on this a few years ago), they were doing it not as some sort of “just get it out of the way now so they can pitch normal going ahead” but rather they were doing it so that their children could throw all the pitches that they’re generally not allowed to at that age which is so destructive, especially on still growing ligaments, joints, and bones. I would really like to see a study on who has gotten TJS and what kind of pitches they were heavily reliant on. I could be completely wrong, but I believe it has to weigh as a much heavier possibility to happen for pitchers who can’t simply “dial it up” and throw it straight, but rather on those pitchers who have to develop a lot of torque on their arm, wrist, elbow, etc. to get heavy breaking movement on a ball still traveling anywhere in the high 80s to mid 90s. Again, I could be way off on all this, but TJS sure has become way more predominant than ever before and only seems to be going up and it all happens with the blink of an eye. Crazy.

    • Yan Solo says:

      I forgot this, but it probably goes without saying that parents were allowing their sons to do this so they could throw certain pitches at a younger age, for scouts watching younger and younger players, in hopes of…you guessed it…raising their draft status. Again, that’s what I remember from the report, so take it with a grain of salt for analysis because it was a while ago that I saw it.

    • TWTR says:

      Yes, and some parents think that pot is the biggest threat to young people…

      Good point though. Getting preventive TJS is a great example of bizarre overparenting. I wonder if there has been some longitudinal study on the surgical outcomes.

      I think the shift in risk assessment about the surgery would now make drafting or trading for a pitcher who you know needs TJS is probably not the low-risk move that it was once widely thought to be.

  19. LarryM Fl says:

    As much as I felt Nova was trending to Hughes. I wish him the best and hope he can rehab back through the next 12-18 months which will make him close to 29 years of age. Still young for a return to the MLB but with a cloud hanging over him.

    For the small % who actually make it to the big leagues it’s a tough pill to swallow when TJ surgery is recommended. Your rehab is monitored by the big club but the distance from actually playing is monumental.

  20. FLYER7 says:

    Does Nova become the CMW of his generation of starters?

  21. Cheval Anonyme says:

    I’m going to post here for the record, belatedly and redundantly, as it seems appropriate.

    Yangervis Solarte anagram of the day:

    “Ivan’s Greatly Sore.”

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