5/29 Fujikawa done for the season
Reliever Kyuji Fujikawa is done for the season. An MRI revealed ligament damage on his right elbow, and he will have Tommy John surgery.
“It’s the first big injury of my career,” Fujikawa said Wednesday. “I’m trying to look forward and trying to come back strong.”
The right-hander, who was placed on the 15-day DL Monday for the second time this season, felt some discomfort on the first pitch to the Reds’ Joey Votto in the ninth inning Sunday. That was his second inning of work, and Votto was the seventh batter he faced in the game.
“I was definitely disappointed,” Fujikawa said about getting the MRI results. “I gave it my all, and I don’t have any regrets.”
He compiled a 12.46 ERA in five games in April before going on the disabled list April 13-May 10 because of a strained right forearm. When he returned, he looked much sharper, and had given up one earned run over 7 2/3 innings in seven games for a 1.17 ERA. Sunday’s game was his seventh appearance since coming off the disabled list.
GM Jed Hoyer got the news Tuesday night and said the MRI revealed a rupture of the UCL in the right elbow.
“We’re disappointed, obviously,” Hoyer said. “Whenever we start talking about forearms, it concerns you. We were cautiously optimistic because the physical exam was positive. The thing about him saying he felt a ‘pop,’ to be candid, we were hoping
it might be something that was lost in translation. Obviously, he was right.”
The Cubs had MRIs of Fujikawa’s arm before they signed him last Dec. 7, and he was healthy.
“This was something that happened the other day,” Hoyer said. “It’s the nature of pitching.”
The Cubs and Fujikawa have not set a date for the surgery, nor have they picked a doctor. He was expected to have the procedure done in the U.S. The right-hander said he is confident he can come back and contribute to the Cubs.
— Carrie Muskat