It started out with a tweet
Cueto has been dealing with some elbow discomfort going back at least a couple starts, GM Bobby Evans told me. "We are getting our heads wrapped around it now. We're still trying to understand where he's at." No MRI results yet.— Andrew Baggarly (@extrabaggs) May 2, 2018
... how did it end up like this?
a relief for giants. sources: Johnny Cueto determined to have a sprained elbow, not a tear. Dr. Andrews recommends rest. out 6 weeks. #SFGiants— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) May 7, 2018
Such great news! I mean, it could have been worse, right?
The Giants have really stockpiled the “out for at least six weeks”-degree of injury and while that’s not great for the immediate future of the team, it doesn’t kick the misery can down the road into 2019. Cueto joins Bumgarner and Panik in that group, and obviously they won’t all be back at the same time, but they will, very likely, be back this season.
For Cueto, this isn’t his first ride in the saddle with pain and rest. He’s had MRIs on that elbow in 2011, 2015, and 2017. Every time, rest has been recommended and he’s come back “fine”. I put that in quotes because there’s nothing “fine” about the unnatural act of throwing a baseball. The deleterious effects on his arm over time were going to come out one way or the other before it was all said and done, that’s simply the nature of pitching, but it’s a relief to know that the game’s not over for him yet... not for an extended period of time.
Of course, as Andrew Downnerly reports,
Johnny Cueto had two examinations and several other docs reviewed his MRI results before he made a determination on a course of treatment. TJ surgery is always an option if rehabbing doesn’t work.— Andrew Baggarly (@extrabaggs) May 7, 2018
At some point, treating Cueto’s problematic elbow with rest might not work. I’d like to think that Johnny Cueto is just quirky enough to get away with escaping the knife. But what do know... except that the Giants are all in on this season, and the idea that they’d have to do it short-handed automatically sours the whole notion. Let’s get crazy and dream big. The Giants need Cueto if they’re going to be successful. The good news for now is they still have him.