It’s very likely that all the Phillies will have to show for signing David Robertson to a two-year, $23-million contract during the offseason is 6 2/3 innings pitched over seven outings, accompanied by a 5.40 ERA. Robertson underwent Tommy John surgery on Thursday and will likely miss all of the 2020 season.
The surgery also repaired Robertson’s flexor tendon, which was the worst case scenario for Robertson, who is expected to miss 14 to 16 months.
Manager Gabe Kapler spoke with Robertson by phone and relayed that the right-hander is apologetic and disappointed at the turn of events.
“I think he’s apologetic because it’s hard to have an injury like this occur and feel like all you want to do is contribute and not be able to do it,” said Kapler. “It’s a rough time for him.”
Initially, the injury was diagnosed as a strained flexor tendon, but Robertson’s attempt to rehab was thwarted by constant setbacks. Last month, Robertson was officially shut down for the season and it was feared that he may need Tommy John surgery. He sought a second opinion by Dr. James Andrews and was advised to have the surgery, which Andrews performed.
Robertson was to join with Tommy Hunter and Pat Neshek to give the Phillies a strong veteran presence at the back end of the bullpen, but Hunter and Neshek have also had injury issues and be out for the season. Hunter and Neshek both have contracts that expire at the end of the season.
Meanwhile, Jake Arrieta will also undergo surgery to remove a bone spur from his right elbow. Arrieta attempted to pitch through the injury but shut himself down earlier in the week after struggling to pitch competitively in games. The injury will take place later this month, giving Arrieta enough time to rehab and be ready for spring training. The Phillies signed Arrieta prior to last season for three years and $75-million. In his first two seasons, Arrieta went 18-19 with a 4.26 ERA in Philadelphia, which is pushed higher by his attempt at pitching with the injury and not being able to be effective. Last season he was 10-11 with a 3.96 ERA.