MLB notebook: Tommy John surgery likely for Angels’ Ohtani

An MRI on the right elbow of Los Angeles Angels pitcher/designated hitter Shohei Ohtani showed new damage to his ulnar collateral ligament, and doctors have recommended Tommy John surgery, the team announced Wednesday.

Sep 4, 2018; Arlington, TX, USA; Los Angeles Angels designated hitter Shohei Ohtani (17) bats in the sixth inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Angels said further updates would be provided when appropriate. If Ohtani is to undergo Tommy John surgery, he would be unable to pitch all of next season while recovering, though his return to hitting would likely be expected to come sooner.

According to multiple reports, Ohtani will continue to serve the Angels as a hitter this season until he has the surgery, if he has it. Ohtani is batting third against the Texas Rangers on Wednesday night.

September 2, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers relief pitcher Kenley Jansen (74) throws against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the ninth inning at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday night, Ohtani pitched for the first time since June 6, going 2 1/3 innings in the Angels’ 4-2 loss to the Houston Astros. He threw 49 pitches, striking out two and walking two. In the first two innings, his fastball reached as high as 99 mph. By the third inning, it had fallen to between 89 and 92 mph, according to reports.

—Los Angeles Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen will be held out of this weekend’s series at the Colorado Rockies at his cardiologist’s recommendation due to potential heart risks at elevation.

Jansen, 30, missed nearly two weeks last month due to an irregular heartbeat, a problem that first returned while he was in Denver on a Dodgers road trip. The high elevation can exacerbate the problem.

“Whenever we get that decision from the doctor, it’s sort of a no-brainer, but you have to applaud Kenley for feeling good and wanting to still kind of see it through,” manager Dave Roberts said. “But we sometimes have to take it out of the player’s hands to do what is best for him.”

Aug 31, 2018; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer (31) talks with manager Dave Martinez (4) during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

—Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez won’t be fired after one season on the job, general manager Mike Rizzo said.

Asked if Martinez would return in 2019, Rizzo replied, “I haven’t considered any other scenario.”

“I think Davey’s doing a great job in managing this team,” Rizzo added. “He’s managed them through a lot of trials and tribulations that a lot of first-year managers haven’t had to go through. And to have a team playing with the exuberance and energy level that they’re playing at this point, I think, is a testament to Davey and the staff and the way that they feel about him in the clubhouse.”

—Field Level Media

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