After months of pain, rehab, and doubt, Cubs pitcher Yu Darvish finally received a diagnosis on his injured elbow in his lost 2018 season: he was suffering from a stress reaction, a repetitive stress injury in a bone in the elbow that can ultimately cause a stress fracture.
In addition to being shut down, Darvish ultimately had arthroscopic surgery in September on the elbow, presumably to remove a little tissue or bone or loose bodies that was causing inflammation and/or discomfort. Whether those bodies – or whatever was cleaned up – were a cause of the stress reaction or simply an additional elbow issue, we don’t know. What we do know is that, following rehab from this surgery and the stress reaction, the Cubs and Darvish are hopeful he will be full go when Spring Training rolls around in a couple months.
To that end, some very good visual news from Darvish himself, just shared to Instagram:
He’s throwing! Darvish is throwing!
He’s throwing on schedule, and that’s a checkpoint crossed off on the way to a healthy return in 2019. He will slowly ramp back up to throwing at longer distances and higher velocities, with an eye toward working off the mound in Spring Training with the rest of the Cubs’ pitchers.
Hopefully he will find that he was pitching through a lot of discomfort – as all pitchers do – but that following surgery and almost an entire year without competitive innings, he’s in a very good place physically to attack this coming season.