Breaking: McGowan Shut Down

According to several reports, the Toronto Blue Jays are shutting down Dustin McGowan after the oft injured pitcher visited what one can only assume is a close personal friend at this point, Dr. James Andrews.

McGowan had been experiencing pain in his shoulder and will now rest for two weeks before restarting his rehab program. As I said at the time of his contract extension this Spring, given his past further injury was rather foreseeable.

However, I take no pleasure in being right. Okay, maybe a little, but I still wish McGowan all the best for his most recent recovery, and remain relieved that his shoulder inflammation wasn’t worse.

Comments (49)

  1. This season is off to a spectacular start!

  2. I don’t think we’ll ever see him pitch in the majors again.

  3. sweet contract though. Mariners GM should hire on Dustin McGowan as a special advisor.

  4. Essentially the Jays gave him a cool 3 million dollar donation for his exemplary rehabilitation work.

    Feel bad for the guy, loved his short lived dominance in 07/08.

  5. I think the contract is a way the Jays to say that this is your incentive to continue rehab. McG did say at one pt that if he needs more surgery he is retiring

    Look at it as a 3M insurance for the rotation for the next 3 yrs, there are worse contract out there, and I dont expect much from him anyway

    • The cost of the McGowan extension is roughly half of the difference between Lawrie making and not making the Super 2 cutoff…

      The Score folks going on about this is like someone complaining that tidal tables don`t account for the gravitational impacts of nearby asteroids… ridiculous. Fodder for the “they’re all just geeks in basements who don’t get what’s important” crowd. Maybe they’re just wannabe business managers pretending they know what $1m is worth in AA’s current context (hint: it is not constant).

  6. “However, I take no pleasure in being right”

    But you’re not yet. For you to be wrong, McGowan merely needs to get about 0.8 WAR over the next two years.Luis Perez has 0.4 WAR already in his 11 IP. Jo Jo Reyes was worth 0.7 WAR last season.

    For him to make this contract not worth it, he pretty much has to never pitch again.

  7. Ahh poor Dustin. Well I hope he gets better soon, its no fun living in pain.

  8. You can’t suck and blow at the same time Parkes.

    One the one hand, you can defend Cashman and the Pineda trade. No question, the Yankees did their due diligence and had MRI’s done on Pineda’s shoulder before the trade was done. Seemingly, there was nothing visible showing as the labrum tear was dormant or whatever (or the radiologist really sucked). Now it has been revealed that Pineda needs anterior labrum surgery. Did the injury manifest itselt in spring training? Perhaps. More than likely, no one knows for sure as labrums don’t simply pop like ulnar ligaments.

    Some baseball observers would tell you that a Pineda injury was inevitable given his large frame and poor mechanics, not to mention his overuse of the slider. Albeit, a betting man would have placed his chips on TJS and not labrum surgery. Cashman knew or must have known the risks and was willing to accept that Pineda would get injured at some point. There are always risks when dealing with pitchers that can throw 98 mph fastballs and devasting sliders (Cashman must have learned this with Joba no?). How else do you explain Campos being involved in the deal? I’ll tell you why, Campos is insurance. Cashman was willing to part with Noesi to get some insurance in the form of the young Campos. Incidentally, Campos might turn out to be a heck of a pitcher.

    In the end, Cashman gave up their best hitting prospect to get Pineda. If the deal becomes a bust and Pineda never becomes the same pitcher again, that is a significant piece, even for the mighty Yankees. Having said that, I am willing to concede that Cashman is not to blame should Pineda return and never be the same pitcher again. Shit like that happens in baseball.

    For the Blue Jays, they had years of medical data on McGowan. They could pick and prod him at will as he was considered property of the Blue Jays. Plus, they had the luxury of planting a scout on a lawn chair to watch each bullpen session, each workout, each throwing program, during weeks of spring training. And they liked what they were seeing. McGowan was lighting up the radar gun and was showing great movement on his pitches. No significant pain and free range of motion on the shoulder. Everyone was telling AA, he’s back, McGowan is back and is throwing fucking smoke.

    To say that the extension was unnecessary and perhaps idiotic is a very naive comment. What if McGowan would have been healthy and would have produced all-star calibre numbers by the all-star break?

    The Blue Jays have committed $3.5M of guaranteed money to McGowan. Even if Dustin never pitches again in the majors, its only money. AA was willing to throw away $5M to Mark Teahan in 2012 in order to engineer the Rasmus trade. Why? Because its only money. Note that the complete and total absence of any top prospects involved in either move.

    Perhaps AA jumped the gun, but like all GM’s, he acted with the best interests of the team as his sole concern. McGowan was and remains an asset that AA did not want to see leave for nothing. Had McGowan broken camp with the big club and pitched strongly after a few starts, one questions if such a team-friendly extension would have been on the table.

    Yes, McGowan is a terrible injury risk. But AA knew that. He also knew that there are examples of pitchers with a similar injury histories recovering and enjoying success. Carpenter won a Cy Young and Trevor Hoffman saved a boatload of games after labrum and rotator cuff issues. AA also knows that these are pie in the sky examples as they represent the cream of the crop in terms of success stories. Which is why AA tempered his enthusiasm and was willing to bet that McGowan could one day aspire to become a 0.8 WAR pitcher.

    The Blue Jays are not a great benevolent society. To equate the McGowan extension as some form of compensation for him working hard in rehab for the last 3 years is fucking silly. McGowan received compensation during the rehab process. The extension was and remains a cost-control effort by AA to secure some starting pitching depth. Much like Cashman, AA doesn’t have a fucking crystal ball.

    If you can defend one GM, I can’t see how you can’t defend both.

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